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Bruises Fade

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"Don't touch me!" He screamed, pulling away from his touch as if it burned him. 

He could feel pain shoot through his chest, worse than all of the hits that he had taken. Worse than the stitches that he had gotten, and worse than when he broke bones. 

Why was this pain hurting so badly? So differently?

"Jungkook," Jimin pleaded, voice breaking, eyes brimming with tears. 

"I said, don't touch me!" 

"Kookie-" 

"Don't call me that!" Jungkook screamed, seething. 

"Just let me explain," Jimin begged, walking after him. In a soft voice, he added, "Please."

He understood now. 

Jungkook understood why it hurt. He understood the pain in his chest, but god, he wished that he didn't. He wished that he remained ignorant. 

It was heartbreak. 

Funny thing is, Jungkook could have sworn that he didn't even have a heart. But things change. Changed. 

His world flipped upside down when the pink haired boy entered his life. Just a few hours ago Jungkook couldn't wipe off the smile on his face, and now...Now he didn't even remember what it was like to smile.

"Just tell me one thing," Jungkook said, turning around to face the shorter boy, trying his best to ignore the tears in his eyes. 

"Anything." Jimin promised, thinking that it was his chance to explain. 

"Was it all a lie?" Jungkook asked in a pained voice, the pain in his chest growing and spreading, "The hugs? The kisses? The nights that we spent together? The talk about our future? The I love you's and the promises we made each other...Did all of that mean nothing to you? D-Do I mean nothing to you?"

"I.." 

"You know what," Jungkook scoffed, a bitter laugh tumbling from his lips, "I don't want to know. I can't trust anything you say right now. I can't trust you!" 

"Please jus-" Jimin started to beg, hot tears flowing down his cheeks. 

"We're done." Jungkook said, turning his back on Jimin, not wanting him to see how broken he had left him, "Goodbye Jimin." 

And just like that, Jungkook walked away from the one good thing in his life.

Jungkook walked away from the Jimin who showed him that everything Jungkook touched wouldn't turn into ash, like Jungkook thought that it would. Jungkook walked away from the same Jimin who used to tell him that he was worth more happiness that there were stars in the universe. Jungkook walked away from the Jimin that became his flashlight in the world of darkness that he was used to. He walked away from the Jimin that used to hug him so right, and tight in his embrace that Jungkook was convinced that he would never be broken again. He walked away from the Jimin who made him whole. 

He walked away from the only man that he had come to love.

Jungkook should have known that he wasn't made for a happy ending. He was never made for happiness. He was never made for love. 

All he was made for was destruction. 

He should have ignored the flutter of his heart and the warmth of his chest whenever he saw Jimin. 

All Jungkook was good for was causing pain and destroying everything in his wake. 

He was never made to love. 

 

Chapter Text

 

"Jimin. Boss wants to see you," Called out the secretary. 

"Be right there!" Jimin said, finishing off the last sentence of his latest article. 

"Now, Jimin," She said, "It sounds serious." 

"Shit, really?" Jimin swore, getting off his black roller chair, pushing his glasses up the bridge of his nose before he knocked on the editor's door. 

"Come in," He heard faintly through the wooden door.

"You wanted to see me, sir?" Jimin asked, nervousness creeping up his stomach. 

"Sit down." The editor said, "Close the door behind you." 

"I-Is everything okay, sir?" Jimin asked, sitting down in front of the long wooden table, opposite the balding editor. 

"Listen, Jimin," The older man said, "You've been a really good employee for our paper. But it just seems as though-" 

"Are you firing me?" Jimin asked, cutting off the old man. 

The older man sighed, "It's not that I want to fire you but it's just-" 

"What have I done wrong? I've always given in my work on time and I've always-" 

"It's your pieces, Jimin!" The editor almost screamed, "Your writing complete fluff pieces! You're staying too much within your comfort zone and you're not taking risks! All your pieces have just been...normal." 

Jimin leaned back against the chair, dispirited. 

"I've tried telling you to take risks but you're not getting it," The man said, shaking his head. 

"Give me another shot!" Jimin said, leaning forward in his chair.

"Jimin..." The man sighed. 

"Please, sir! Just, please! Give me a shot! One last chance!" Jimin pleaded, "If my work isn't up to the mark then fire me! You're going to fire me either way, but at least with this, I have a chance to redeem myself." 

"Fine," He said, nodding, "You have 3 days to tell me what your piece is going to be on."

"Thank you! Thank you!" Jimin said, "You won't regret this!" 

"Your job's on the line here, Jimin," The boss warned, "One shot. That's all you get." 

 

~~~

 

"It's been two days, Tae!" Jimin whined, "I have to go to work with literally no prospect of what to write! My boss is going to fire me and I'm going to be homeless!" 

"You're not going to be homeless," Taehyung said, "You know I won't let that happen." 

"Tell that to the fact that I need a job to pay rent and without this job, I won't be able to pay rent! My landlord is going to kick me out and I will have to live on the streets!" Jimin groaned, "Dogs poop on the streets, Tae! I can't live there!" 

"Hey, if all else fails, we'll just find you a sugar daddy."

Jimin narrowed his eyes at his best friend, "I am not going to get a sugar daddy." 

"Your loss buddy," Taehyung said, lying down next to him. 

"What am I going to do?" Jimin said, "He said that I write fluff pieces! And that all of my articles are too safe! What the hell does that even mean?" 

"What was your last article about?" Taehyung asked. 

"The history of a community centre that was being turned into a skating rink," Jimin said. 

"And people actually read that?" Taehyung said, surprised. 

"You're doing a great job at cheering me up there," Jimin said sarcastically. 

"Look," Taehyung said, turning to face Jimin, "I'm going out tonight. Why don't you come? Maybe you can even get an epiphany or some inspiration or something."

"I'm not in the mood to go out." 

"Oh come on! It'll be fun!" Taehyung urged. 

"Where are we going?" Jimin asked. 

"Do you remember that party I went for the other day?" Taehyung asked. 

"Tae, you go for so many parties that it's hard to keep track," Jimin said. 

"Doohyun's party!" 

"He literally threw three parties in the last two weeks!" 

"The party where I hooked up with the guy and the clown fetish!" Taehyung said. 

"The one who wanted you to Honk when you came?" 

"If you saw his dick, you would do it too," Taehyung said, defending himself. 

"What about this party?" Jimin asked. 

"Well, clown guy had some connections and he said that he would get us some tickets to go to this boxing match," Taehyung said. 

"No!" Jimin said immediately.

"Why not?" Taehyung whined, "It'll be fun! Namjoon's going too!" 

"Why would I want to go watch some people beat each other up for fun?! That's inhumane on a whole different level!" 

"Ugh! I forgot who I was talking to," Taehyung said, rolling his eyes. 

"What's that supposed to mean?" 

"That even you wanted to go, you wouldn't blend in with the crowd," Taehyung said, knowing that riling Jimin up would be the only way to convince him, "You would stick out like a sore thumb with your cotton candy hair." 

"I could totally blend in if I wanted to!" 

"It's not your kind of scene though, Jimin," Taehyung said, trying his best to hide a smirk. 

Jimin was about to retaliate but then realised what Taehyung was trying to do. 

"No, no," Jimin said shaking his head vehemently, "I know what you're trying to do, and it's not going to work! There is no way in hell I am about to go to some stupid boxing match!"

 

~~~

"Yoongi," Jin said as a greeting as soon as he walks through the doors of Yoongi's gym. 

"Oh hey," Yoongi said, setting the equipment by the bench. 

"You coming tonight?" Jin asked. 

"As soon as Jungkook is out of the showers," Yoongi answers. 

"He's coming too?" 

"He's the third match," Yoongi informs him. 

Jin lets out a long sigh of disappointment, "He's injured, Yoongs." 

"Do you think he cares about that?" 

"Don't you?" Jin said, words sharp and cutting. 

"You don't think I do?!" Yoongi almost screams, "I'm more than just his trainer, Jin! I've been with him longer than you have! You don't think I've tried to stop him!" 

"You're right," Jin said, taking a step back, holding his hands out in surrender.

He had to remind himself that Yoongi cared about Jungkook as much as he does and neither one wants to see the younger boy get hurt. But they also knew him. They knew the kind of person that Jungkook was and once he had his mind made up, no one can stop him, not even them.

"I'm sorry," Jin said, "I'm just worried."

"I know," Yoongi told him, "I am too." 

"I just don't get why he doesn't just take one night off! Especially if he's injured!" 

"He has something to prove," Yoongi said, "He almost lost the last fight." 

"He still won."

"But he wouldn't have if the other guy wasn't so cocky," Yoongi said, "You know how Jungkook gets about these sort of things..." 

"Yeah but-" 

"I could hear the two of you shouting all the way in the showers," Jungkook said, walking out of the bathroom with damp hair as he slipped his shirt on. His once purple and swollen jaw, now a faded yellow, "Why are you screaming at each other, grandpa's?" 

"If you don't want to do 50 extra laps tomorrow, I suggest you stop calling me grandpa right now," Yoongi threatened, narrowing his eyes at the younger boy. 

"50 only?" Jungkook scoffed, cockily. 

"Brat," Yoongi muttered under his breath, trying to curb the fond smile from appearing on his face. 

Jin, on the other hand, had worry etched all over his face. 

"What's up?" Jungkook asked the oldest. 

"Don't 'whats up' me!" Jin said, "Seriously, Kook, what are you doing?" 

"Nothing," He said, shaking his head. 

"You're being an idiot! You're injured-" 

"When has that ever stopped me before?" Jungkook scoffed, "Look, I appreciate the concern but I'm fine!" 

"You bruised a rib!" Jin almost screamed. 

"It's nothing," Jungkook insisted. 

"If you're doing this just to keep up your title-" Jin started to say but Jungkook cut him off. 

"Of course I need to keep up my title!"

"You can miss one fight!" Jin said, his voice steely.

"I didn't become unbeatable by chickening out!" 

"You won't be chickening out! It's called taking care of yourself!" 

"I'm going." Was all Jungkook said.

"Kook..." Jin said, his voice barely over a whisper, knowing that he lost this fight. 

"Jin," Jungkook said, letting out a sigh, "I get why you're worried, but you don't have to be. I can take care of myself, okay? I mean, I've come this far with no help, I'm sure I'll be fine." 

"But you don't have to do this without any help anymore, Kook," Jin said, "We've been trying to tell you this-" 

"We're going to be late," Jungkook said, clearing his throat. 

Yoongi sighed, knowing that there was no point trying to get Jungkook to talk about feelings. He was never good with expressing himself in the first place. He couldn't remember a time where he saw Jungkook be open and vulnerable. He doesn't think that Jungkook has ever opened up to him. All he knows about the younger boy is that he just showed up to the gym one day with dark purple bruises all over him, and told Yoongi that he had never wanted to feel weak again. From then on, Yoongi took him under his wing and taught him everything that he knew. 

"Jin, you riding with us?" Yoongi asked as he was locking up his gym. 

"Might as well," Jin said. 

"Is your boyfriend coming?" Jungkook teased. 

"Not my boyfriend." 

"Yet." Yoongi added with a smirk. 

"He's a guy..." Jin said, "That I meet up with often." 

"And occasionally have sex," Yoongi added.

"Not yet." 

"Make out with," Jungkook said, walking to the car. 

"Yeah, we do that," Jin said with a mixture of a dreamy and smug look. 

"Okay. Ew." Jungkook teased. 

"Homophobe!" Jin said. 

"I'm literally gay," Jungkook said, getting in the passenger seat of the car and closing the door behind him.

"I'm surprised you're even letting him come tonight," Yoongi said, starting the engine.

"I have to be honest with him if I want this to go any further," Jin said. 

"You must really like him," Yoongi commented. 

"I do." 

"Are you going to tell him?" Jungkook asked, "You know..about everything?" 

"Let's see how he takes tonight first," Jin sighed,leaning back against the leather seats. 

"You mean, let's see how he takes the fact that you organise a whole underground boxing ring twice a week?" Jungkook said. 

"Yeah, that," Jin breathed out. 

"Think he's going to accept it?" Yoongi asked. 

"He's bringing a couple of friends, so it looks promising?" Jin said. 

"What's the worse that could happen, right?" Jungkook said.

 

~~~

 

Jimin tried his best not to look out of place. Tried being the keyword.

He stuck out like a sore thumb with his pink hair and tight jeans. He kept tugging on the hem of his tight fitting shirt that Taehyung forced him to wear because he looked 'hot enough to eat'. He sat down at the bleachers of this damp, dark place beside Taehyung, who was on his phone, and Namjoon who was searching the place every couple of seconds. 

"Where's Honk Boy?" Jimin said, nudging Taehyung. 

"Honk boy?" Namjoon asked, glancing at the two.

"The guy who came with us," Taehyung said. 

"You mean Jaesung?" Namjoon said, cocking an eyebrow.

"I don't know his name," Taehyung shrugged. 

"Then what do you call him?" Jimin asked. 

"Babe, darling, worthless slut, daddy," Taehyung listed out, "Depends on the mood honestly." 

"Everyday we stray further and further away from God's light," Namjoon muttered, eyes going back to the crowd. 

"Aren't you an atheist?" Jimin pointed out. 

"The sentiment remains," Namjoon said.

"Anyway," Jimin said, looking back at Taehyung, "Where is he?" 

"Bathroom." 

"He's been in there for a while," Jimin said. 

"I told him to wait for me," Taehyung said, "Said that I would suck him off."

"Aren't you going?" Jimin asked, "He's been waiting for a while." 

"Nah," Taehyung said with a shrug, "Wanted to hang out with you guys." 

"You're terrible," Namjoon said with a shake of his head. 

"Oof! Degrade me more," Taehyung teased. 

"You kiss your mother with that mouth?" 

"Amongst other people," Taehyung said. 

"Who're you looking for, Joon?" Jimin asked. 

"Remember that guy I was telling you about?" Namjoon said, slightly shy. 

"The one who you said made you believe that a god exists?" Jimin asked. 

"Yeah," Namjoon nodded. 

"What about him?" 

"He invited me here today," Namjoon said, "Apparently he has some sort of in? He said he wanted to meet me." 

"Here? Of all places?" Jimin asked, cocking an eyebrow, "Isn't that a bit...shady?" 

"He's a good guy! Couldn't harm a fly," Namjoon assured, "Plus, he's really cute!" 

"Hmm.." Jimin hummed apprehensively. 

"I'll introduce you guys! He's really sweet! I promise!" Namjoon reassured. 

"So Jimin," Taehyung asked, "Any epiphanies as to what you're going to write yet?" 

"Nope," Jimin sighed, "I'm going to lose my job tomorrow." 

"Why?" Namjoon asked. 

"Boss doesn't think I'm creative enough. He thinks I don't take enough risks and that all my writing is too safe and comfortable." Jimin scoffed, "I'm boring, is basically what he's saying. All I ever write are fluff pieces." 

"Why don't you write about police brutality, or the drug ring, or even genetic modification in animals?" Namjoon suggested. 

"All are being written about already," Jimin sighed, "It's fine. If it's meant to be then it'll be. Might as well enjoy my last night."

"Think of the boxer as your frustration and the winning boxer as you!" Taehyung said, slinging his arm around Jimin, "It might just help." 

"Thanks Tae," Jimin said with a giggle. 

"Joon, where's lover boy?" Taehyung asked, "I want to meet him."

 

"I texted him," Namjoon said, "He should be here by now." 

"Guys shh," Jimin said, pointing at the makeshift ring, "I think it's starting."

 

~~~

 

"Kook." Yoongi called out, walking into the locker room to see Jungkook bandaging up his hands for the fight.

"What's up?" 

"You're next." Yoongi said, closing the door to the loud cheers and the sound of bare skin being hit, "There's been two fights already." 

Jungkook nodded, getting into the right headspace. 

"Kook," Yoongi called out, softer now. 

Jungkook looked up, cocking an eyebrow. 

"You sure about this?" 

"You've been my trainer for a while now. You know my track record..." Jungkook said, trailing off, "What do you think?" 

"I may be your trainer, but I'm not the one fighting," Yoongi shot back. 

"I have a track record to maintain," Jungkook said, finishing up with the bandages, "I'm not going to lose." 

"The Unbeatable JK..." Yoongi said, "It's quite a burden to carry around." 

"Yeah, but I do it well," The younger replied cockily. 

There was two knocks on the door, signaling that the fight was about to begin.

"Ready JK?" Yoongi asked, giving the younger boy a once over, already beginning to see the changes from Jungkook to JK, the fighter. 

His eyes were narrowed, and full of fire. His muscles were tense and his hands were already fisted. 

Jungkook nodded, the bandage long forgotten on the dull, wooden bench. 

"Knock 'em dead," Yoongi said, opening the door, as Jungkook entered the ring, welcomed with loud cheers. 

 

~~~

 

"Where's lover boy?" Jimin asked, shouting slightly over the loud crowd into Namjoon's ear. 

"He said he would meet me after this fight," Namjoon said, "Apparently its the main event." 

"Who is it?" Jimin asked. 

"Some dude named JK? He's unbeatable according to Jin," Namjoon said. 

From the corner of Jimin's eye, he could see Taehyung texting. 

"Tae," Jimin said, nudging him. 

"Hmm?" Taehyung hummed an acknowledgement, not looking up from his phone. 

"Put your phone away, you're being rude!" 

Taehyung laughed, "Minnie, it's an underground boxing match, I don't think etiquette applies here." 

"Of course it does!" Jimin said, "See, I missed the introductions! How am I supposed to know who is who?!" 

"Watch the match and maybe you'll figure it out." Taehyung said, "The one who loses can't be The Unbeatable JK."

"Maybe it could! Maybe the track record would be broken," Jimin challenged, "I always vote the underdog." 

"I'll take my chances with the loser not being JK," Taehyung said, going back to texting. 

There was a ding of the bell, followed by an eruption of cheers, making Jimin jump slightly in his seat from the sudden shock. Jimin's eyes were trained on the two men, circling each other, both with their arms up, waiting for the other to make the first move. Beside him, Namjoon was cheering and whooping loudly. 

"Why are you cheering? You don't even know them," Jimin said, leaning closer to Namjoon. 

"Jin texted me that JK has never lost a fight. Apparently people have placed bets on him knocking the guy out during the first round!" Namjoon bragged, "He's that good, or well meant to be anyway."

"Which one is JK?" Jimin asked, glancing between the two fighters. 

One of them was tall, with black hair falling over his eyes, a big purple bruise on the right side of his torso, and if Jimin squinted, he could have sworn that there was a bruise on his jaw as well. The man was clearly fit, and young for his age. He was probably the youngest fighter in any of the matches that Jimin saw today. Was that even allowed? 

The other man was lean, but built. He was bald and had multiple cuts and bruises that littered his body. Jimin could have sworn that some of the marks on his body were even gun shots. 

What kind of place was this anyway? 

"The one with the bruise on his hip," Namjoon said. 

"They both have bruises!" 

"The good looking one!" Namjoon sighed, rolling his eyes. 

"Well, you could have led with that.." 

As soon as Jimin finished talking, more cheers erupted. Jimin quickly looked back to the rink. 

The first punch was thrown by the bald man. It barely grazed JK on the chin, but it was enough to fuel a fire. JK's eyes narrowed, as he clenched his fist even tighter. Jimin thought that he would start attacking, but he didn't. Instead he waited, bouncing side by side on the balls of his heels as he waited for the other man to attack again. And he did. The other man brought his hand back before punching again, but this time lower, clearly aiming for the nasty bruise that was plastered on JK's torso. JK moved swiftly, barely allowing the skin of the man's hand to brush against him. He dodged the attack and then punched the man as hard as he could right smack in the middle of his stomach. The bald man keeled over as the wind was knocked out of him. He tried to catch his breath and JK used this lapse of time to his advantage. He forced the man up again, punching once, twice and then a third time. Blood seeped from his nose and the side of the bald man's lip onto JK's knuckles. The smell of iron and spit didn't bother JK anymore. He was used to it.

Jimin noticed how there was a certain fire and rage that was in JK's eyes that he had never noticed in anyone else's before. It was a darkness that scared him. 

JK pulled back his hand and delivered one final blow to the man's ribs. He heard the wind being knocked out of him as soon as the fatal blow was delivered. JK pushed the man off of him, making him fall onto the floor with a loud thud. He simply looked at the body as if it was a piece of meat, the darkness in his eyes only growing. For a couple of seconds, nobody made a sound. Whether it was out of fear, or amazement, or even awe...The place was quiet. And then cheers erupted, all of them in JK's name. But the man didn't acknowledge anything. He glanced down at the bald man once again and left the ring, not looking at anyone, not talking to anyone. He was by himself. 

"Man! That was amazing!" Taehyung said, practically jumping. 

"He's so good!" Namjoon agreed, "Just like Jin said." 

"Yeah..." Jimin agreed halfheartedly, somehow feeling sadder for JK than the man who lost. 

"Jin said he's coming over in a few," Namjoon told them, looking down at his phone. 

"I'm going to go to the bathroom," Jimin said. 

"Oh! I'll come with!" Taehyung said, "I think I left Clown Boy there for too long." 

"He's still waiting?!" Namjoon said, surprised. 

"People do crazy things for me, Joonie!" Taehyung told him, "I'm a catch!"

"You're insane," Namjoon said, shaking his head. 

"You've got to earn me," Taehyung defended. 

"And I've got to pee! Can we go?!" Jimin said. 

"Is this your way of trying to get Jin and I to have alone time, because if it is-" 

"It's really not," Jimin insisted, "I just have a tiny bladder and Honky Boy over here is always horny." 

"Little Honkers has needs," Taehyung said, glancing down at his crotch with a grin.

"Mom always did say that I had a bad rep with choosing friends.." Namjoon muttered to himself. 

"Before I pee my pants, can we go?" Jimin said. 

"You know, some people are into that kind of play," Taehyung pointed out.

"Tae." Jimin warned. 

"What?! It's general knowledge! I'm helping you expand your mind," Taehyung said. 

"I remember when general knowledge was more about what capitals were, or what the wonders of the world were," Jimin said, "Those were the days." 

"That's boring!" Taehyung said, weaving in between the crowd to find the bathroom with Jimin in tow, "Learning about kinks is much more fun!" 

"So what's the deal between you and Ronald McDonald?" Jimin asked. 

"Nothing really," Taehyung said with a shrug, "I'm just bored and he has a big dick."

"Are you planning on seeing him again?" 

"Nah, I don't think so," Taehyung said, shaking his head, "I mean, this is fun and all, but I don't just want to be hooking up with people all the time, you know?" 

Jimin could tell that Taehyung wanted to talk about this more at length, but clearly this wasn't the time nor the place to do so. 

"Is that really the reason, or is it just because you can't remember Krusty the Clown's name?" Jimin joked, trying to make light of the situation. 

"After tonight I won't have to," Taehyung said with a giggle, grateful for the distraction. 

"I think the bathroom's are over here," Jimin said, pointing to the right. 

"I'm giving you a warning now," Taehyung told him, "Pennywise has been waiting for a long time, so I may only have about 2 minute tops for you to pee before I suck his soul of his dick." 

"Suddenly, I don't need to pee anymore," Jimin said, turning around, "I'll find another bathroom." 

"You sure, Chim?" Taehyung asked, raising an eyebrow. 

"I'll definitely find another bathroom," Jimin nodded, "You have fun in there." 

"If you hear screaming, just know that I'm giving the best suck of my life." Taehyung told him with a wink. 

"I would say good luck but I don't think you're the one who needs luck in this situation..." Jimin mumbled, watching Taehyung close the bathroom door behind him. 

Jimin glanced around the area, hoping that he would see a sign, or a door, or anything remotely resembling a place that he could go to the toilet in. At this point, he would even take an empty water bottle, as long as it was away from all of these eyes. He could feel people staring at him and his pink hair like he didn't belong in this place. All he could do was ignore them and walk away. He stood on his tip toes as if that would help him get a better look around the place. At the corner of his eye, right at the back, he saw someone open a door and go through it. 

"What do I have to lose." Jimin muttered to himself. 

He pushed through the sea of people, weaving his way in and out of the crowd, muttering 'excuse me' and 'I'm sorry' as he bumped into them. Finally, he reached the door. He pulled the door open and walked through it. 

"Toilet. Toilet. Toilet." He said out loud to himself, looking around the locker room, already feeling his bladder about to burst. He walked to the back of the white locker room and practically slammed the door shut once he found the toilet. 

"Who's in here?!" He heard a hoarse, angry voice shout, echoing around the room. 

"One second!" Jimin yelled back, not caring about anything else other than emptying his bladder at the moment. 

"You're not me-" 

"I said give me a second!" Jimin yelled back, "It's not polite to talk while someone is peeing! Geez!"

"Polite..." He heard the man mumble under his breath. 

Jimin flushed, walking out of the cubicle and washed his hands. He walked out to where the lockers were, hoping to see the man who interrupted him. Instead he was met with the same man that he saw in the ring. 

"O-Oh." Jimin stuttered out, clearly surprised. 

"You're not meant to be in here." 

"I needed to pee." Jimin said, voice small and nervous. 

"I could tell." 

"You're..." Jimin said, words dying out on his tongue

"JK." 

"I know." Jimin told him, pathetically, "I saw." 

"You watched my match?" He asked.

"From the stands," Jimin said. "You were good." 

"Just good?" Jungkook asked, slightly amused now. 

"I mean...I don't have anything to compare it with," Jimin said, "So, I'm assuming, you're good? That's what they all say anyway." 

"Who say?" 

"The people in the stands," Jimin told him. 

"Right..." Jungkook said, "And you believed them?' 

"To be honest, I was rooting for the other guy at first," Jimin told him. He didn't know why, but he just did. 

"And why is that?" 

"I always support the underdog," Jimin said, plain and simple. 

"Ahh, you're one of those types," Jungkook said, almost cackling. 

"What's that supposed to mean?" Jimin asked, cocking an eyebrow, feeling a little insulted. 

"Oh come on!" Jungkook said, "You must know." 

"Clearly I don't." Jimin said, feeling braver. 

"Someone like you doesn't belong in a place like this," Jungkook said. 

"Someone like me?" 

"Look at you, dollface," Jungkook said, "You have pink hair. You care about manners. You're polite. You're every mother in laws wet dream. You don't belong here." 

"You're making a lot of assumptions for someone who's the stereotype of a brooding bad boy," Jimin scoffed. 

"And what's that supposed to mean?" Jungkook asked, taking a step forward, cocking an eyebrow. 

"The dark hair. The probable tattoo of something that started off as meaningful, but then turned into a hobby. You probably have more bruises on you than you do braincells," Jimin said, too caught up in his words to notice that Jungkook was right in front of him, "And not to mention th-" 

"Who's making assumptions now?" Jungkook said in a low voice, hot breath fanning over Jimin's face.

"I-I.." Jimin could barely stutter out. 

"And by the way," Jungkook said, leaning in closer, "I don't have any tattoos. Not yet, anyway." 

"You have a lot of bruises though," Jimin said, voice small as he looked down at Jungkook's naked torso. 

"Enjoying the sight?" Jungkook teased.

"I'd honestly rather be taking you to a hospital." Jimin told him, "Those look painful. I could help you out, if you wanted? But I have to warn you, I only have limited first aid knowledge and I-" 

"First aid?" Jungkook said, mouth forming into a smile, thoroughly amused.

"You're hurt!" Jimin said, as if Jungkook didn't know. 

"It's nothing I haven't experienced before," Jungkook told him, not knowing why he felt the need to reassure him, "I'm fine." 

"Are you not seeing what I'm seeing?!" Jimin said, gesturing towards the bruises littering his torso. 

"I'm fine." Jungkook said. 

"Clearly you have a concussion or something, because there is no way anyone can be fine with this!" Jimin said. He looked up from Jungkook's torso and into his eyes and in a soft voice, he asked, "Aren't you in pain?" 

"Not anymore." Jungkook said, a hint of sincerity lacing his voice. 

Just as Jimin was about to say something, the locker room door burst open, making Jimin jump back slightly from the shock. 

"Jun-" Yoongi was about to say but then stopped when he realised that Jungkook wasn't alone, "Oh." 

"What is it?" Jungkook asked, clearing his throat and running his fingers through his jet black hair. 

"Uhh," Was all Yoongi could manage, not used to seeing Jungkook with company that he wasn't having sex with. 

"I should go..." Jimin thought out loud, "Thanks for letting me use the bathroom." 

"The bathroo-" Yoongi wanted to ask but Jimin pushed past him with a soft, 'excuse me'. 

"Oh and," Jimin said, just before he was about to leave, "You should really get that checked out." 

Jungkook let a soft, amused smile play on his lips as he watched Jimin leave, closing the door as he did. 

"Bathroom?" Yoongi asked. 

"Long story."  

"Who was he?'

"I have no idea..." Jungkook said, trailing off.

Jimin walked out of the locker room, a coy smile playing on his lips as he thought back to the interaction that he had just shared with the boxer. He looked around the busy arena and the makeshift ring that was still standing, albeit lonelier than before. On the white ground, beside the rugs were splatters of blood that Jimin knew didn't just come from one fighter. He froze on the spot, thinking to himself that there was more than just fights going on here. There was something in this place that kept people coming back, and it couldn't just be for a few fights. There was something larger going on, something bigger than just fist on skin....There was a story here that no one has explored yet, and Jimin was going to do it.

"Hey!" Taehyung said, looking relieved when he spotted Jimin, "Where did you go? Why weren't you answering my texts! I was worried about you!" 

"I went to the bathroom," Jimin said, still in his thoughts.

"Still could've answered my texts.." Taehyung said.

"Tae, you were right!" Jimin said, with a grin on his face. 

"I usually am," Taehyung joked, "But about what this time?" 

"The epiphany! I had it!" Jimin said, excitedly, "I know what I'm going to write about!" 

"What?" 

"I can't tell you right now, I need to go!" Jimin said, while the idea was still fresh. 

"But Namjoon was going to-" Taehyung started to say, but Jimin cut him off. 

"Tae, I don't have much time. I need to get this down while it's still fresh! I think I can save my job!" 

 

~~~

 

"You want to write about what?" Jimin's boss asked him, mouth slightly agape. 

"Underground boxing." Jimin repeated. 

"Why?" 

"Think about it, sir," Jimin said, leaning forward in his chair, closer to the wooden table, "It's a dangerous world that no one has explored yet, and I get why. It's unlicensed, there are people running it that no one ever wants to get on the bad side of, it's bare knuckled. There are multiple deaths from it every year! For all we know the mafia's involved as well!" 

"And you want to cover this story?" His boss asked, cocking an eyebrow. 

"No one will ever suspect that I want anything to do with that world," Jimin said, leaning back as he said, "It's the perfect cover." 

"Gotta be honest with you, Park," The older man said, "I'm kind of already sold." 

"There is one slight problem though," Jimin said. 

"What?" 

"I would have to go in undercover," He told the older man, "As in, no ties to this Newspaper, at all. If I want to do this, I need to do it right. I need to gain trust, and be at their disposal whenever they want, for whatever they want." 

"And you're sure you can do this?" He asked the younger boy. 

"If I fail, I might as well go out with a bang, right?" 

"More like a punch," The boss said, making a lame joke.

Jimin forced a laugh. 

"Who would have thought, that Park Jimin, the fluff piece enthusiast, would be going undercover for an exposé piece." His boss said, thoroughly impressed.

Jimin smiled. 

"How long do you need?" 

"45 days." Jimin said, "At least 40 to do the right digging around, maybe 5 or so days to write it all?" 

"Done." His boss said. 

"Thank you, sir." Jimin said, standing up. 

"45 days, Park!" His boss said, "Let's hope neither one of us come to regret this decision."

 

Chapter Text

It started off with a lie.

A white lie. A small one. One so small that if you had asked Jimin, he would have probably said that it was less of a lie and more of an omission of the truth. 

But, if you had asked him how he went from one small 'lie' to being pinned against the wall with Jungkook's lips on his neck, and Jimin's legs around his waist, he really wouldn't be able to tell you. 

 

3 days ago. 

"Jimin?" Taehyung said through the phone, "Where have you been? I haven't heard from you since the night of the fight? You literally just ran off while mumbling-" 

"Tae! I'm fine," Jimin said.

"Are you? I wouldn't know! You haven't texted, or called, or even tagged me in any memes!" Taehyung screamed. 

"What are you doing later?" Jimin asked. 

"What?" 

"Later! In the evening! What are you doing?" He asked again. 

"Ordering in chinese takeaway and binge watching season 4 of Modern Family," Taehyung answered, "Why?" 

"I'm coming over. I need to tell you something," Jimin said. 

"Is everything alright?" Taehyung asked, concerned. 

"Hopefully it will be," Jimin muttered, "I got to go! But order me some chinese too! I want those pork dumplings." 

Jimin hung up, looking up at the sign hanging off the old building. He thinks that he is in the right place, but he couldn't be sure. Last time he was here, Taehyung and Namjoon were the ones that led him there. He was too busy trying to think of an excuse to leave to pay attention. 

He walked in, cautiously, assessing his surroundings and hoping that he could find some clues as to what to do next. 

"Hello?" He called out to the open air.

It was damp, and smelled like sweat and vomit. He was sure that it wasn't so bad the last time. He could feel goosebumps slowly rise on his arms. It was creepy, the open space that he was in. Although it was practically afternoon, it felt like this place hadn't seen the sunlight in years. It was very dimly lit, and Jimin could barely make out what was in the room. Even though he had been here once before, it felt like a completely different place. 

"You're not meant to be here." A voice called out from behind him. 

"Holy shit!" Jimin cursed, jumping back from the scare. He thought that he was all alone. 

"How did you get in?" The man said, voice deep and hoarse, silhouette walking closer to him. 

"The door," Jimin said, vaguely pointing to the direction in which he entered. 

"What are you doing here?" The man asked, now standing apprehensively in front of Jimin as if the pink haired boy was a threat. 

Jimin couldn't say that he was going undercover to try and expose the underground boxing world in all its illegal glory. That would obviously get him killed on the spot. He had thought about a number of excuses that he could use to try and at least get some information out of people. But after a couple of hours, he crafted the perfect sob story to appeal to whatever heart that these people had. 

"I-I," Jimin stuttered, putting on an act, "I had watched the match the other day with my friends-" 

"You? Came here?" The man asked, cocking an eyebrow. 

"I did," He said, nodding vehemently, "I watched it with my friends and I wanted to-" 

"You watched a boxing match?" The man interrupted again, not believing him. 

Jimin was growing more and more annoyed, "Yes! I did! And I wanted to learn." 

"Why?" He asked, arms crossed across his chest. 

"Because I'm tired of being looked at as fragile." Jimin said, some truth in that sentence. 

"You should start by dyeing your hair," The man said, pointing vaguely at the pink hair. 

"My hair shouldn't dictate the way you look at me," Jimin almost spat, reminding himself that he should tone it back if he wanted to get anywhere.

"You know what," The man said, sighing, taking out a scrap of paper from his jeans and a pen, "I know the perfect person who eats shit like this up."

He scribbled down something in his scratchy handwriting and handed the small piece of paper over to Jimin. 

"Go to this address tomorrow and ask for Yoongi," The man told him, "He'll help you. He's a sucker for the underdogs." 

"Thank you!" 

"Just one thing," The man said, "Don't tell him that I sent you. He doesn't like that." 

"I don't even know your name?" 

"That's the spirit!" The man told him, clapping Jimin's shoulder, "Now scram." 

 

~~~

 

Sweat dripped down his forehead, to his cheeks before dropping down onto the grey cemented floor. His fists were bandaged white, eyes narrowed as he concentrated on the sand bag in front of him. He punched once, grunting as he did, and then again, and again, and again. It was as if all the rage that he had pent up was taking form in the sand bag that hung off the ceiling. He didn't know how long he had been working out, but he didn't care. He didn't care that his black singlet shirt was soaked through, or that he could feel the sweat dripping down his back. He didn't care that his black hair was matted on his forehead, or that he could feel the burn of his muscles with every move that he made. He just didn't care. In fact, he loved it. He loved when his muscles burned, and when he was so exhausted that he couldn't think anymore. That just meant that he was making progress. 

"That's enough, Kook." He heard from behind him. 

Jungkook turned around, wiping the sweat off his forehead with his slightly sweaty arm. 

"You're back early," Jungkook commented, turning back to the already abused sandbag, going in for another punch. 

"Stop punching, already!" Yoongi complained, "If you break this bag, I'm not buying you another one." 

"You say that," Jungkook said with a grunt as he got another punch in, "But we both know that you will." 

"Enough, Kook!" Yoongi said sternly, standing behind the punching bag, holding it with both his arms. 

"Fine." Jungkook said, getting one last punch in before walking towards the bleachers where his gym bag was.

Yoongi joined him, exhausted himself. 

"How did it go?" Jungkook asked, taking a long swig from his cool water bottle.

"Alright," Yoongi nodded. 

"How is he?" Jungkook asked, trying not to let worry lace his words. 

"Alive." Yoongi said, looking at his shoes. 

"Thank god," Jungkook muttered to himself. 

"He's doing much better," Yoongi told him, "Looking more and more like himself now that the swelling has gone down." 

"And the stab wound?" 

"The descending artery wasn't cut when he got stabbed," Yoongi started to explain, "But he did lose a lot of blood. The doctor said he's not completely out of the woods yet, but the worst of it is over." 

"How's Jin taking this?" Jungkook asked. 

"He's pissed, that's for sure," Yoongi told him, "He has almost all of his men out looking for the rat bastard who did this." 

"I'm not surprised," Jungkook commented, "I know how much Hoseok means to him." 

"I think Jin feels particularly bad because this happened when Jin was with Namjoon after the fight two days ago," Yoongi said. 

"How did Namjoon take the news about the fighting ring?" Jungkook asked, leaning back against his palms. 

"I don't know," Yoongi said, "I didn't ask either." 

"I just can't believe that Jin told him," Jungkook said, shaking his head. 

"Why?" 

"You know Jin," Jungkook said, "He's not the type to fall for someone. I just thought that Namjoon would be another quick screw and that's it." 

"Didn't you say that it would last for two days, or something?" Yoongi said, amused.

"I did." 

"Well, it's been two months now.." Yoongi trailed off, and then added, "And he's telling him about the fighting ring. I wouldn't be surprised if he told Namjoon about the rest of it." 

"You mean the gang?" Jungkook asked with a scoff, "No way! He wouldn't!" 

"People do crazy things when they're in love," Yoongi said. 

Jungkook just shook his head, "This is why I'll never fall in love. It's so dumb." 

"Never say never." 

Jungkook scoffed, "Okay then Justin Bieber." 

"I'm just saying," Yoongi said, "The universe works in a funny way. The more you say you don't want something, the more it throws it at you." 

"Well, the universe has screwed me over one too many times already," Jungkook said, anger lacing his voice, "It knows that love and relationships are the two things that I don't do."

"Somehow I feel like you're going to regret saying that." 

"Come on," Jungkook said, standing up, "That's enough chit chat. Time to train. We have a fight in three days." 

 

~~~

 

"Wait, what?!" Taehyung screamed. 

"Tae, I've already repeated myself three times, don't make me do it again," Jimin groaned, throwing his head back into the pillows of the couch. 

"I don't care!" Taehyung said, voice still raised, talking over the television in the background, "You're going to say it again and this time, you're going to make sense!" 

"How was I not making sense before? I literally told you everything!" 

"Again!" Taehyung demanded, stuffing a dumpling in his mouth.

Jimin sighed, "I really don't know what you wa-" 

"Again!" Taehyung said, mouth full with a dumpling. 

"To the public, I'm basically unemployed, but really, I'm doing a piece on the underground boxing world," Jimin simplified as best he could, "This article will either save my career or end it." 

"How long do you have again?" Taehyung asked, mid chew. 

"About 40 or so days," Jimin said with a nod. 

"And you think that theres actually something to expose?" 

"Tae think about it," Jimin said, shifting in his seat to face the other boy, "When we were there that day, there was already a large betting pool placed on just one fight! Underground boxing is illegal enough as it is, can you imagine what else goes on there?" 

"Minnie this is dangerous..." Taehyung voiced his concern. 

"Yeah, but this could also save my career," Jimin said, "It's something I have to do." 

"Are you sure about this?" Taehyung asked, more serious now. 

"I don't really have time to think about the consequences, Tae," Jimin sighed. 

"Okay then," Taehyung said with a nod, "I'll help you!" 

"You can't tell anyone about this!" Jimin warned, "Not your parents, not the old lady who lives on the third floor, definitely not Namjoon and you can't tweet about this on your private account either!" 

"B-But-" Taehyung stuttered. 

"Don't make me regret telling you!" 

"Ugh! Fine! I won't tweet about it!" Taehyung said, rolling his eyes. 

"Okay! Good!" Jimin said, feeling the weight of this secret be lifted off his shoulders, "I feel better now knowing that I can talk about it with you." 

"I'm always going to be here for you, Chim," Taehyung said with a smile, placing his hand on Jimin's knee. 

"Sap," Jimin teased, rolling his eyes. 

"Do you know where to start with the whole article?" Taehyung asked. 

"I went over to where the match was held the other day," Jimin told him, "The guy there gave me an address to go to. So, I guess I'll start there?" 

"What are you even going to do?" 

"Learn to box," Jimin said with a smile. 

"You? Boxing?" 

"What is up with people thinking I can't box! I can be tough!" 

"Minnie, you cried at the sight of a three legged dog that day," Taehyung said. 

"It only had three legs, Tae! It can't do things that the other dogs can do!" Jimin said, already tearing up. 

"Yeah, you can definitely box," Taehyung said sarcastically.

"This is why I'm going to use this whole fragile persona people have of me to my advantage," Jimin told him. 

"That's quite smart actually," Taehyung commented. 

"Speaking of smart," Jimin said, changing the conversation, "Was Namjoon mad that I just left the other day? I wanted to text him an apology but I've been so busy!" 

"Huh, come to think of it, I haven't heard from him since the night of the fight either..." 

"Really?" Jimin said, more than he asked, "That's really unlike him. I thought the would want to know what you thought of Lover Boy." 

"I actually didn't get to meet him," Taehyung said. 

"Why?"

"Apparently Lover Boy called Joonie and wanted to meet him alone," Taehyung said, wagging his eyebrows. 

"Oh?" Jimin replied with a smirk, "Do you think they.." 

"Must have been really good if he didn't text us for two days," Taehyung said. 

"Or really bad," Jimin countered. 

"Can you imagine ending up with someone and only getting bad sex?" Taehyung said, "That must suck." 

"Is that why you dumped Fizbo the Clown?" Jimin asked, leaning against the arm of the sofa.

"No." 

"What is it?" Jimin asked, concerned, "You said that you don't just want to be hooking up with people. What did that mean?" 

"It means that I'm done with the one night stands," Taehyung said, picking the lint off the couch, "But..." 

"But what, Tae," Jimin said in a soft voice, urging him to continue. 

"But I don't think that I'm good enough to be in a relationship," Taehyung admitted, feeling a lump grow in his throat, "Especially since..." 

"Listen to me, Tae," Jimin said, "The fact that you're worried about what you can provide in a relationship already shows that you're thinking about it seriously. Relationships take time and effort to grow. It takes commitment, and it takes communication. Look at us! We worked on this relationship and it's stronger than ever." 

"Yeah Minnie, but this is different," Taehyung said, "We're different." 

"How, Tae?" Jimin said, "We worked on our friendship. We communicated our problems, we talked about what was bothering us, we made jokes, we nurtured this friendship to the point where we can say anything and everything, and not worry about being judged. A relationship is the same thing. And I know you're worried because of what happened the last time, but look at you now! You think you're ready, and you're willing to work on the relationship. That's growth."

"What if I'm not and I cave and go back to one night stands again?" 

"That's fine too!" Jimin said, "As long as you're doing what you want and you're happy, I'll always be by your side, supporting you." 

"You're the best, you know that?" Taehyung said with a smile. 

"I've been told," Jimin smiled, popping a now cold dumpling into his mouth. 

"So, are you really going to do this whole undercover thing?" Taehyung asked. 

"Yeah." Jimin nodded. 

"What if you get hurt?" 

"Then I get hurt." Jimin shrugged, seemingly nonchalant even though he could feel the nervousness and the fear creep up.

"I'll be there to patch you up," Taehyung said, enthusiastically. 

"I know you will," Jimin smiled at his best friend. 

 

~~~

 

Jimin wasn't going to lie - He was nervous.

Very, very nervous. 

His palms were sweaty and he could feel his phone keep slipping through his hands, no matter how many times he wiped them on his grey sweatpants. He was following Google Maps to get him to Yoongi's gym. He kept watching the distance between where he was and where he needed to be lessen metre by metre and the weight on his chest grow heavier and heavier. He tried his best not to think about the worst case scenarios and focused more on perfecting his sob story and trying to sell himself as the underdog that he needed to be. 

500 metres. 
400 metres. 
300 metres. 
200 metres. 
150 metres.
100 metres.
50 metres. 
40 metres. 
30, 20 metres.... 

At this point he was just taking baby steps. He didn't know if he was more scared, or nervous. All he did know was that there was a weight on his chest. He knew that once he entered into the doors of this gym, he couldn't back down from this. 

With a deep shuddering breath, he pushed the door of the gym opened, walking inside. 

He walked through the hallway, hearing faint noises coming from the light that was shining at the end of the corridor. It gave him some comfort knowing that he wasn't here alone. He reminded himself why he was here in the first place and then walked through the double doors of the corridor. 

"Oh my god! I am so sorry!" Jimin almost screeched, covering his eyes at the scene in front of him.

The minute he walked in, he saw someone pushed up against the wall of the gym, with their lips against someone else's and tongue down their throat. He was sure that there was a hand inside the other's pants, but he would rather not confirm. 

"What the f-" Jimin heard from behind him followed by a thud. 

"I'm so sorry! I didn't mean to- I just wanted to se-Uhh," Jimin stuttered and stumbled over his words, feeling heat rise to his cheeks from embarrassment. 

"Maybe we should move this-" One voice started to say, but was immediately cut off by a gruffer, more stern voice. 

"Leave." The other commanded. 

"Fine, but we both know that you'll call me later." 

"Why aren't you gone yet?" The sterner voice spat. 

Jimin felt bad for interrupting...whatever it was that was going on, but he felt worse for the guy that was being talked to like that. Still, he wouldn't turn around or open his eyes until he was sure that the coast was clear. He heard footsteps followed by the sound of a creaking door. 

"Who are you?" The gruff voice asked. 

"Uhh, is it safe to open my eyes yet?" Jimin asked in a small voice. 

"Yes." 

Jimin turned around, slowly opening his eyes, as it took time to adjust to the light. 

"It's you!" The pink haired boy gasped. 

"Bathroom boy," The raven haired fighter said with a hint of a smile, "What are you doing here?" 

"Wait, are you Yoongi?" Jimin said, pointing at him. 

"Definitely not," The other replied. 

"Wait then who are you?" 

"Why do you want to know?" He asked, cocking an eyebrow. 

"I'm here to see Yoongi," Jimin said, "If that wasn't already obvious enough..." 

"It wasn't," Jungkook said, "But why do you want to see Yoongi?" 

"I want to learn to fight." Jimin stated. 

"You? Fight?" Jungkook asked, amused. 

"Why does everyone keep saying that?!" Jimin said, frustrated, "Is it so surprising?!" 

"From you - yes." Jungkook said bluntly. 

"Well, I want to learn to fight and I've been told that he's the one to go to! He's the best!" 

"And who told you that?" Jungkook asked, tilting his head slightly. 

"The...internet?" Jimin tried. 

"This gym isn't listed on the internet, doll," Jungkook said, taking a step forward, "Try the truth this time." 

"Uhh, you're not Yoongi," Jimin said, taking a tentative step back, intimidated by the fighter in front of him, "So, I'm not goin-" 

"I'm the closest person to Yoongi," Jungkook said, taking another step forward, enjoying the reactions from the smaller boy, "I practically own half of this gym." 

"Practically owning something, and actually owning something are two very different things," Jimin blurted out. 

"Is that right?" Jungkook said, taking a bigger step forward. 

"Oh, uhh, I jus-" Jimin stuttered, stumbling back, heat rushing to his cheeks under Jungkook's intense gaze. 

Jungkook licked his lips, enjoying watching the smaller boy squirm. His eyes raked down Jimin's features, watching his cheeks tint red. He wondered just how far that blush went exactly. He took another step forward, watching Jimin quickly look around trying before taking two steps back. 

"Jungkook, what have I told you about bullying people in my gym?" Jungkook heard Yoongi say, followed by the creak of the front door. 

"It's cute how you think that after all this time, I still listen to you," Jungkook said with a smile, "Your hope is truly an inspiration."

"Jungkook." Jimin muttered to himself, committing that name to memory to write about later. 

"And who are you?" Yoongi said, cocking an eyebrow as he stood in the middle of the gym looking at Jimin. 

"Oh! Hi! I uhh," Jimin said, "Are you Yoongi?" 

"Depends on who's asking," Yoongi said. 

"I'm asking..." Jimin said, as if it was not obvious. 

"Again - Who are you?" 

"Jimin." He answered, "Park Jimin. I need to talk to you." 

"So, talk," Yoongi said, shrugging his shoulders. 

Jimin's eyes fleeted between Jungkook and Yoongi, "Can we maybe talk in private?" 

"I don't bite, sweetheart," Jungkook said with a smirk, "Well, I do, but not that hard. I promise." 

"We can definitely talk in private," Yoongi said, looking at Jungkook in disgust. 

"Excuse me," Jimin said, trying to slither away from Jungkook who practically had him trapped between the bleachers and his body. 

"Kook," Yoongi said, "Do the warm up workout you did yesterday but add ten more sets to each,. And I swear to god, if you try to pull what you did on the night of the fight, I will stop you from going to the next match, even if it means I have to tie you up and lock you in the closet." 

"At least take me to dinner first, you kinky little shit," Jungkook said, playfully rolling his eyes. 

"I'm still older than you!" Yoongi said, walking into his office. 

"You honourable kinky little shit," Jungkook corrected, walking towards the dumbbells. 

"Brat." Yoongi spat, unable to hide the fond look on his face as he tried to hold back a smile. 

Jimin walked into his office wordlessly, nervousness creeping up again along with a stirring of his stomach. He had to pull this off. This was his only chance.

"Sit down." Yoongi said, closing the door for Jimin's sake.

Yoongi didn't hide anything from Jungkook, or rather, he tried his best not to hide anything from the younger boy, not for any other reason other than the fact that he had practically raised him. Yoongi considered Jungkook to be closer than his actual blood family. Even if Jungkook didn't say it, he looked up to Yoongi as more than just his trainer. Yoongi was his father figure, his brother...His family. They shared a bond so deep, that no one had come close to understanding it, not even them. 

"So, what can I do for you?" Yoongi asked, leaning back in his chair.

"I was hoping that maybe you could teach me to fight..." Jimin said in a small voice. 

"Why?" Yoongi asked. 

"Because I'm tired of people looking at me like I'm some small fragile little thing," Jimin spat out, "I went to the fight that day-" 

"That's where I know you from!" Yoongi said, suddenly sitting up in his seat, "You're Bathroom Boy." 

"Excuse me?" 

"Bathroom boy!" Yoongi repeated, "You were with Jungkook in the locker room."

"Well, yes but-" 

"Look," Yoongi said, more serious now, "If you're doing this just to get with Jungkook, I assure you that you don't have to-" 

He had practiced what his back up plan would be just in case Yoongi said no, and now seemed like a good time to break it out.

"No." Jimin interrupted, voice sterner now, eyes glossing over.

"What?" 

"I don't want to have sex with him! I don't even know him!" Jimin said, sounding as offended as he could, "This isn't about some one night stand, or about some man! This is about me learning how to defend myself! I don't want to be looked at like some fragile, frail, breakable damsel in distress. I want to be able to protect myself and know that if something happens, I don't have to rely on anyone. After seeing that fight that day, and all the matches, I just...I couldn't help but feel so...so..." 

"Helpless? Intimidated? Like no one but you could protect yourself?" Yoongi said. 

Jimin looked at him, wondering if he had already had conversations like this in the past. 

"Yeah. Like that." Jimin nodded, "Exactly like that." 

Yoongi crossed his arms over his chest, leaning back into the chair, deep in thought. 

He let out a sigh, "Okay." 

"What?' 

"Okay. I'll help you," He said with a firm nod. 

"Thank you! Oh my god! Thank you, so much!" Jimin said quickly, relief flooding over him, the heavy eight on his chest lifted. 

"But there are some rules you need to follow," Yoongi said, more serious. 

"Yes! Anything!" 

"Firstly, whatever happens in the gym, stays in the gym," Yoongi said, holding up a finger, "Secondly, we look out for each other here. We're more like a family than our own family." 

"And if I break these, I get kicked out?" Jimin asked, almost meekly, fear rising up in his chest. 

"Let's hope it never comes to that." Yoongi said, eyes darkening as he stared deep into the younger boy's eyes. 

Jimin just nodded, not knowing what else to say, or do. Was he making a mistake by even taking this up?

"Any questions?" Yoongi asked, leaning back into his chair. 

"Not a question so much as a...disclaimer?" 

"What is it?" 

"I actually just got laid off the day of the fight, so in terms of money," Jimin said, this being a part of his plan, "I will pay you, but if it's a little late-" 

"Stop." Yoongi said, cutting him off. 

"Please don't kick me out, I swear I will get the money for the lessons, I just-" Jimin started to ramble, thinking that the plan backfired.

"No, no. I'm not going to kick you out," Yoongi said, trying to calm him down, "I was going to say that you could do a few odd jobs here and there, and I will pay you accordingly." 

"Y-You would do that?" Jimin said, this working out better than the original plan he had in mind. 

"I told you, we're a family here." Yoongi said, earnestly, "I wouldn't have even let you step into my office if I didn't think you were trustworthy." 

"Thank you." Jimin said, pushing away the guilt that he felt. 

"So, when do you want to start training?" Yoongi asked. 

"Whenever you're free!" Jimin said. 

"Come by tomorrow," Yoongi said, "10am. Don't be late." 

"Thank you so much! I seriously can't thank you enough!" Jimin said, grateful. 

"See you tomorrow, kid," Yoongi said, watching Jimin leave with a smile on his face. 

Jungkook walked in to Yoongi's office right as Jimin left through the front door. 

"Taking him in?" He asked, plopping himself down in front of Yoongi. 

"I am." Yoongi said, not looking up from the paperwork he was filling in. 

"What makes him so different from the number of people you already rejected and threw out?" The younger boy asked, wiping the sweat off his forehead. 

"I don't know," Yoongi admitted, "I just got a feeling that I could trust him." 

"Did you?" Jungkook asked, cocking an eyebrow.

"You don't agree?" Yoongi said, turning the page over. 

"He just doesn't look like the fighting type," Jungkook said. 

Yoongi looked up, a knowing smile on his face, as he said, "If I judged everyone who walked in here based on their appearance, you wouldn't be sitting in front of me today, Kook. Don't forget, you weren't always as built or as strong as you are now when you walked through those doors for the first time." 

Jungkook cleared his throat, picking at the lint on the chair, "You're not doing anything. Why didn't you take him on today?" 

"After I finish these, I want to go see Hobi," Yoongi answered. 

"Yoongi, the doctor said that-" 

"I know what the doctor said." Yoongi almost spat out, "I don't care that they had to medically induce him into a coma! I want to see him, dammit! I need him to know that I'm there!" 

"Okay," Jungkook nodded, "I'll come along." 

"But what about training?" 

"I'm not called unbeatable for nothing, Yoongs. I can survive missing one session." 

 

 

 

 

~~~

 

"Jab. Jab. Hook. Jab. Jab. Jab. Jab. Hook." Yoongi called out orders one by one, slowly, trying to let Jimin get used to the feeling.

Jimin was focused. He was focusing on nothing but Yoongi's voice. He could already feel the burn in his muscles from the repetitive movement. He didn't expect his first day to be so intense. 

"Again!" Yoongi demanded. 

"Already?" Jimin panted out, bending over, trying to regain his breath. 

"Again!" Yoongi said, sterner now. 

"Go easy on the little guy, Yoongi," Jungkook said, walking through the doors and dropping his bag on the bench by the bleachers, "It's his first day." 

"Shut up! You still owe me the two sets you didn't finish yesterday," Yoongi said, pointing at Jungkook with the boxing glove in his hand. 

"Yeah, sure," Jungkook said, rolling his eyes. 

"I won't let you go tomorrow, Kook," Yoongi warned, emptily, "Don't test me." 

"What's tomorrow?" Jimin asked, regaining his breath. 

"Match night." Jungkook answered. 

"Again?" Jimin asked, "Didn't you have one three days ago?" 

"There are matches three times a week," Yoongi answered, "JK here plays two of them." 

"That's a bit..." Jimin said, trailing off. 

"Intense?" 
"Stupid?" 

Jungkook and Yoongi answered at the same time. 

"Yeah, kinda," Jimin said softly, agreeing to both of them.

Jungkook tried to hide a smile as he got his equipment out, moving to the end of the room to hang the sandbag. 

"Kook." Yoongi called out, making the younger turn around, "10 minutes of that, then move to the kettleball, dumbbells and then press ups. Seven sets each." 

"Woah." Jimin gawked. 

"What?" Yoongi asked, turning back to Jimin. 

"That's really intense." 

"He trains everyday, Jimin," Yoongi said, "This is just a warm up before the real thing." 

"I can't even do one set," Jimin said.

"You'll get there." Yoongi encouraged, raising the boxing gloves, "Again." 

Jimin took a breath, and then punched again, and again, and again. His muscles were screaming for a break, the burning getting too much for him. But he endured it. 

"Jab, Jimin! Harder!" Yoongi encouraged, stirring him on. 

Jimin punched as hard as he could into the boxing glove that Yoongi was holding, letting out a loud grunt as he did. 

"Your form needs work." Yoongi said, "We'll work on that in a bit. Take five." 

Jimin let out a sigh of relief, bending over and panting. He hadn't done this much exercise since PE in high school. 

"Good job, Min," Yoongi said, patting the younger's sweaty shoulder. 

Jimin smiled at the praise, walking towards his bag on the bleachers and plopping himself down in exhaustion, taking out his water bottle. 

"Kook, form!" Yoongi shouted out, taking a swig of his water. 

Jungkook stood straighter, eyes narrowed and full of fire as he channeled his rage into each punch. 

Jimin couldn't help that his eyes raked over Jungkook's form. He took in the sight of Jungkook's grey shirt clinging onto his body as if it was a second skin, sweat running down his back and his hair sticking to his forehead. His jaw was taut, muscles bulging and grunts escaping his lips.

Jimin couldn't help but gulp his water down. 

"Break's over," Yoongi said, stepping in front of Jimin, blocking his view of Jungkook.

Jimin nodded, hoping that Yoongi didn't notice his excessive staring. 

"Into the ring," Yoongi instructed to Jimin, turning back to Jungkook, "Kook! Move on to the second part now." 

Just as Yoongi was about to pick up the boxing gloves to get into the ring with Jimin, his phone buzzed with a text message. He practically leaped over the bench to grab it, looking down at the message with an intensity that Jimin had never seen in anyone's eyes before. 

"Yoongi?" Jimin asked, softly, "You okay?" 

"Uhh, yeah," He said, eyes trained on the phone. 

"Yoongi." Jungkook said, walking over towards him, only slightly breathless, "What is it?" 

Yoongi looked at Jungkook. Just one look, and it was as if they could understand each other. Jimin couldn't help but feel left out. 

"Is it-" 

"Yeah, Kook." Yoongi said with a nod. 

"Are you going to go?" Jungkook asked. 

"I need to." Yoongi said. 

"Go." Jungkook encouraged, "I'll handle everything over here." 

"I should be back in a couple of hours, if not less, but if I'm not then I'll text you." Yoongi said, "Keep working, guys." 

"I got it." Jungkook said, urging him to leave, "Update me." 

"I will." Yoongi said, grabbing his bag and dashing out the door. 

"What just happened?" Jimin said, mostly to himself. 

"This is a little over your pay grade for now," Jungkook teased. 

"Should I leave too?" Jimin asked, unsure, feeling a little awkward with just him and Jungkook in this big gym. 

"I told Yoongi that I could handle everything here," Jungkook said, climbing into the ring, "And that includes you." 

Jimin gulped, intimidated by the larger boy's almost predatory glance and teasing smirk. 

Jungkook took a step towards him, "Scared?" 

"No." Jimin shook his head. 

"Trust me?" He asked. 

"I don't even know you," Jimin told him. 

"Of course you do! I thought that I was the stereotypical...what did you call it again?" Jungkook teased, "Ah that's right, the stereotypical brooding bad boy." 

"That was after you called me every mother in laws wet dream!" Jimin defended, scoffing. 

"Was I wrong?" Jungkook said. 

"Was I?" Jimin challenged, cocking an eyebrow. 

"You're going to have to trust me if you want to train with me," Jungkook told him. 

"I'm not even training with you! I'm training with Yoongi," Jimin said, feeling less and less intimidated. 

"Do you see Yoongi anywhere?" Jungkook said, shaking his head as he looked around the room, "So, you're stuck training with me." 

Jimin sighed, "Fine. Let's do this."

"First thing's first, we have to work on your form," Jungkook said, "Show me your stance."

Jimin got into position, holding his arms up just like Yoongi taught him in the morning. 

"You're too stiff." Jungkook said, walking over to him. 

Jimin took an involuntary step back, not even realising what he did until Jungkook stopped mid track. 

"If you take another step back, you're going to fall off the ring," Jungkook commented, jaw tightening. 

"Right. Sorry." Jimin said, shaking his head. 

"You know what," Jungkook scoffed, getting out of the ring. 

"Wait, where are you going?" Jimin asked, slight panic in his voice. 

"You're here because you don't want people to see you as weak, right?" Jungkook said. 

Jimin nodded, following Jungkook with his eyes as he exited the ring and walked straight to the sandbag. 

"You know why people see you like that?" Jungkook said, bitterness in his voice, not bothering to wait for a reply as he spat out, "It's because you give out those vibes. You want so badly to be looked at like this person who is frail and weak, and cute and yet-"

Jimin could feel rage bubble up in his stomach from Jungkook's words. He didn't even know this guy and yet here he was, criticising every single thing about Jimin as if he had known him for years. 

"You don't know anything about me!" Jimin spat, getting out of the ring himself, striding to stand in front of Jungkook, "You go around making assumptions about everyone, thinking you're invincible just because you can throw a few punches?!" 

"First rule of boxing," Jungkook said with a proud smirk, "If you want to win, you have to intimidate them, even if they intimidate you. Get the upper hand and show them that you're not meant to be messed with and that you're not scared of them." 

"What?" Jimin asked, blinking blankly.

"Look at you, sticking up for yourself, getting all up in my face," Jungkook said, proudly, "I'm impressed." 

"Oh." Jimin said, suddenly realising what Jungkook was trying to do - Jungkook riled him up, wanting Jimin to go to him instead of constantly being intimidated and afraid. 

Jungkook took a small step forward, wanting to see if his little impromptu lesson had worked. Jimin stood there, waiting for the next set of instructions, watching Jungkook.

"Good." Jungkook declared when Jimin didn't move away from him. 

"What?" 

"Nothing," He said, shaking his head, "Ready to fix your form?" 

Jimin nodded, getting back into the stance that Yoongi showed him in the morning. 

"It's not bad," Jungkook said, evaluating the positioning of his hands, feet and how stiff he was, "But, you're too stiff."

Jungkook circled around Jimin before settling behind him. He put his hands on his hips and one of his legs in between his, pushing the two feet apart. In a low, husky voice he said, "Push your feet a little further apart, like this." 

Jimin was pliant in his hands, heart speeding up, trying not to show how affected he was. He barely knew the guy! He couldn't let one person, especially Jungkook of all people, ruin what was already a plan in motion. 

Jungkook's hands slid up from his waist all the way up his shoulders and then down to his arms, moving his arms slightly into position. 

"Make a fist," Jungkook said into his ear. 

Jimin complied, squeezing his hands tighter into a fist, pushing his nails down into his skin, trying to control his breathing. He kept reminding himself not to get so affected by Jungkook's words and his body practically on top of his. 

"Tighter." Jungkook said, voice low and barely above a whisper. 

Jimin's fists were practically white by how tight he was clenching his fists.

"You're too stiff, Jimin," Jungkook said, sliding his hands back down his waist, pulling Jimin's back closer to him, "Relax." 

Jimin took a deep breath, his heart practically pounding in his chest. 

"You're not relaxing, Jimin," Jungkook said. 

Jimin could practically hear the smirk that was spread out on Jungkook's face. 

"Why is that?" Jungkook asked, "You seem stiffer than before...Something bothering you?" 

"Oh for fu-" Jimin said, turning around in Jungkook's hold.

Jimin's breath hitched. He didn't expect Jungkook's face to be so close to his. Jimin wondered how close they were to begin with.  

"Are you always this stiff, or is this just with me?" Jungkook said, eyes darkening with a predatory lust that Jimin had never seen before. 

His eyes fleeted between Jungkook's eyes and his plump bottom lip that Jimin couldn't help but think how good it would feel on top of his. 

He could feel his heart beat faster, and faster, practically pounding out of his chest. Their faces were so close together, he could feel their hot breaths mixing as one. Jungkook leaned down first, slowly. If Jimin didn't want this, he would back away now. But he didn't. Instead, his eyes fluttered shut as he waited to feel the soft lips on his. He brushed his lips against the smaller boy once, twice. Jimin pulled Jungkook down by his shirt, fisting the material near his chest. Nothing about the kiss was gentle. It was hot, it was heavy. It was like they didn't need to experiment with a pace. It was like their lips knew each other already. Jimin pulled Jungkook closer by the shirt as Jungkook dug his fingers into Jimin's waist. Jungkook groaned, needing Jimin closer than they were now, a low sound coming from the back of his throat.  

He pulled away, breathing heavily, as his hands moved down, "Jump." 

Jimin panted, jumping and wrapping his legs around Jungkook's waist. They wasted no time, as Jimin leaned down, crashing their lips together again, arms circling Jungkook's neck before tangling themselves in his hair, not realising that Jungkook was moving them, until Jimin was slammed up against something cold. He groaned, arching his back into Jungkook who moaned at the sensation. It was as if they couldn't be closer, but yet, they yearned for more. Jimin was pulling Jungkook towards him by his hair and Jungkook was pushing himself towards Jimin, grinding himself into the smaller boy. 

Jimin pulled away first, already breathless. Jungkook didn't waste a second as he moved from Jimin's lips to the side of his mouth to his neck and further down, trying to find his sweet spot. Jimin threw his head back into the wall, not caring that he had hit it. The only thing going through his mind was Jungkook, Jungkook, Jungkook. It was like he knew no other name. He couldn't feel anything else other than Jungkook. He couldn't think of anything else other than Jungkook. Did any other name even exist before him? 

 

Jimin was about to pull Jungkook towards his lips, craving the feel of his soft plump lips on his own, needing to feel him again, and again, and again, but was interrupted. 

"Both of you," He heard, followed by the creaking of the door and a pissed off Yoongi, "Stop! Now!" 

Jimin gasped, pushing himself away from Jungkook and straightening himself out, guilt written all over him. 

"Jimin, you need to go." Was all Yoongi said. 

"But Yoongi I-" Jimin started to say but was interrupted. 

"Leave, Jimin." He said sternly, steel in his voice, "I'll see you tomorrow at 10." 

"Okay." He replied meekly, practically dashing to get his stuff from the bleachers. 

"Jungkook." Yoongi said, "My office. Now!" 

 

Chapter Text

Jungkook followed Yoongi wordlessly into his office, the older taking a seat behind his desk, while the younger closed the door behind him. He didn't know why he closed it, seeing as it was just the both of them in the whole gym, but he did.

"Look Yoongi," Jungkook started off, "If this is about what you saw between Jimin and I-"

"I don't care about that right now." Yoongi said, sharply, face blank, but eyes full of torment.

"Then why did you make him leave?" The younger asked.

"Kook you know me, I never get involved in your love life, and I'm not going to start now," Yoongi said.

"Then, what's going on?"

"I just came back from visiting Hobi..." Yoongi said, more serious now.

"What happened?! Is he okay?! Why didn't you tell me you were visiting him?!" Jungkook said, moving closer to the desk, his thoughts running wild.

"Kook..." Yoongi said, eyes pricking with tears but he refused to let it out. He would never cry in front of the younger boy. He would never let him see himself like this.

"Yoongi, what happened?" Jungkook demanded.

"Kook, when I was there..." Yoongi said, a lump forming in his throat, the words getting stuck, unable to make it out.

"Yoongi!" Jungkook almost screamed, wanting nothing more than to shake the older boy, forcing him to say everything that he knows, but Jungkook couldn't. There was a part of him that was so scared, that he didn't want to know what happened.

"Kook, when I was there, Jin pulled me aside to tell me something," Yoongi said, looking at the table, hands fiddling with the unused blue post it notes, near the keyboard, "He said that he had a lead on the person who did this."

"That's great!"

"But the problem is, the way he got this information," Yoongi said, still not having the courage to look at Jungkook, "Jin needs someone to go and get as much information from this guy as possible."

"What are you trying to say, Yoongi?" Jungkook asked, furrowing his eyebrows in confusion.

"He told me that he only trusts 4 people enough to do this. Hobi, me, himself and you." Yoongi said, "Hobi is in the hospital, Jin can't do it because the person recognises who he is, I can't go because I'm too close to Hoseok and he thinks that my judgement and emotions will be clouded...So that only leaves one person..."
"Me."

"You." Yoongi echoed.

Jungkook was silent as he tried to process this information.

"Look, Kook, it's fine if you don't want to-" Yoongi started to say but Jungkook cut him off.

"When do I leave?" Jungkook asked.

"What?"

"Where is it? When do I leave? How many pe-"

"You're going?" Yoongi asked, as if surprised.

"Why wouldn't I?" Jungkook said, more than he asked, "I'm part of the gang. I'm Hobi's friend. I want to do this."

Yoongi's mouth was slightly agape, as if not believing what he was hearing.

"I'll call Jin and get the details." Jungkook said, turning to leave the room.

"You're actually doing this?" Yoongi asked, stopping him mid way.

Jungkook turned around, hand on the doorknob as he said, "I'm only going to ask you this once - Do you not want me to go?"

"Kook..."

"Answer the question, Yoongi." Jungkook demanded, voice low.

The relationship between Yoongi and Jungkook was multifaceted. There were times where Yoongi was a father, and others where he was a brother, others where he was the only voice of reason, and sometimes, Yoongi was the one who needed comfort, But no matter what role Yoongi took on, he was treated with the same respect. Jungkook held him so high on a pedestal and there was no hiding that. In more ways than one, Yoongi saved Jungkook's life. He gave the younger boy a purpose, and a reason to keep fighting even when Jungkook wanted nothing more than to give up. There was a soft spot in Yoongi that only had Jungkook's name on it.

That's why this question was so hard.

Yoongi knew that all he had to do was say the word, and Jungkook wouldn't go. One word. One syllable. That's all it would take.

On one hand, he had Jungkook to think about. The same boy that he had raised ever since Jungkook came to his gym in bruises, and wet tattered clothes. And on the other hand, he had Hoseok. His Hoseok.
"Kook..." Yoongi breathed out.

"It's a yes or no question, Yoongi." Jungkook said.

"You almost died the last time!" Yoongi screamed.

"But I didn't!" He said, "I'm here and I'm fine."

"Yeah but-"

"Do you want me to go or not?" Jungkook asked.

"Go." Yoongi said, slumping down in his chair, hoping that he wasn't being selfish by asking. He knew that even if something happened to the younger boy, there was no way in hell Jungkook would ever blame him. Knowing him, he would probably make a joke and just laugh it off, because that was the kind of person Jungkook was, as much as he tried to portray himself differently.

"See! That wasn't so hard now, was it?" Jungkook joked, "Okay, I'm going to go call Jin."

"Kook, one last thing," Yoongi said, as soon as Jungkook opened the door.

"What is it?"

"The whole thing with Jimin just now," Yoongi said.

"Ah, I should have known..." He said with a small smile, closing the door once again.

"You know I never get involved with your love life, right? And I usually wouldn't say anything..."

"But?" Jungkook said.

"But," Yoongi repeated, "Jimin doesn't seem like the type for one night stands."

"What are you trying to say?"

"Look, he seems to be going through a little bit of a rough patch right now. He just lost his job, he feels the need to defend himself..." Yoongi explained, "Plus, I allowed him to join the gym."

"So, don't sleep around with him is what you're trying to say?"

"No," Yoongi said, shaking his head, "I'm just saying that, I don't want anyone here to feel awkward around each other. We're a family."

"Got it!" Jungkook said, going to leave but then stopped himself.

"What?" Yoongi asked.

"Are you going to tell him?" Jungkook asked.

"What?"

"Jimin." Jungkook said, "Are you going to tell him about this whole thing."

"You mean the gang?"

"Yeah."

Yoongi leaned back in his chair, thinking about it.

"I might." He decided, "I just want to wait a while longer."

"To see if he's trustworthy?" Jungkook asked.

"We've had bad experiences in the past, haven't we," Yoongi said with a curve of his lips.

"But good ones too," Jungkook reminded.

"Hoseok was different."

"Jimin might be too," Jungkook said, monotonously, as if he didn't care.

"Well we'll know in a bit," Yoongi said.

"Okay, I'm going to go call Jin now."

"Be careful, Kook." Yoongi said.

"Yeah, yeah," Jungkook said, waving him off, with a smile on his face.

 

~~~

 

"Tae." Jimin called, heart beating fast in his chest.

"Jiminie Cricket!" Taehyung answered with a wide boxy smile as he held the phone close to his ear, "To what do I owe this pleasure?"

"Tae, I messed up! I messed up big time!" Jimin said quickly, panicking.

"Woah! Woah! Woah! Calm down," Taehyung said, sitting straighter in his chair, "Breathe, Chim."

"Tae, I can't! I don't-Tae-Why did I-" Jimin said, getting breathless.

"Jimin, calm down! Breathe with me. Long, slow, deep breaths," Taehyung coached through the phone.

Once Taehyung had Jimin coherent enough to understand him, he slowly coaxed him into telling him what was wrong.

"Tae..." Jimin said, biting his lip.

"What happened? What's wrong?" Taehyung asked, concerned.

"I messed up."

"How?"

"You know how it was my first day at the gym?" Jimin said, more than he asked, "Well, Yoongi who is the instructor was teaching me while Jungkook was doing his own thing, but then Yoongi got a call and he left and then Jungkook was helping me, but one thing led to another, and we kinda, maybe, made out..."

"Wait, you what?!"
"We...made out." Jimin confessed, wincing, "I don't even know what happened! He was fixing my form and the next thing I know his lips are on mine and my legs are around his waist and we're up against this wall and-"

"Was he good?" Taehyung asked.

"Tae!"

"What? It's for science..."

"Tae, Yoongi walked in." Jimin said.

"Oh. That's not good," Taehyung said.

"You don't think I know that?!"

"What did he say?"

"He asked me to leave," Jimin told him.

"He kicked you out?" Taehyung asked, mouth agape.

"Not exactly..."

"Then what?"

"He said to come back tomorrow at 10?" Jimin said, "What does that mean?"

"I think it means to go back tomorrow at 10."

"Tae, come on, be serious," Jimin said, biting the tip of his thumbnail.

"I don't know what it means, Chim," Taehyung told him, "I'm not Yoongi, I can't tell you what he's thinking."

"I'm screwed aren't I?" Jimin sighed, "I was making such good progress too! They were meant to take me to a match tomorrow and I screwed it all up for a kiss!"

"Was it at least a good one?" Taehyung asked.

"It really was..." Jimin admitted in a small voice.

"Do you think you could get into another gym?"

"Not unless I'm experienced," Jimin sighed.

"From the form fixing, I don't think you are," Taehyung teased.

"Tae." Jimin chastised.

"Too soon?"

"Way too soon."

"Now what?" Taehyung asked after a beat of silence.

"What are you doing?" Jimin asked him.

"I'm at work," Taehyung said, spinning around in his black work chair, tie loosened as he bit the already chewed up pen with his phone near his ear.

"Can you come over tonight?" Jimin asked, pouting even though Taehyung couldn't see him.

"Chinese takeout and a movie?" Taehyung asked.

"Ice cream too."

"Let's invite Namjoon," Taehyung suggested, "I haven't heard from him in a while."

"One more brain to figure out what I can do," Jimin said.

"Are you going to tell him about the whole undercover thing?" Taehyung asked.

"Joon can't keep a secret to save his life," Jimin barked out a laugh, "There is no way I'm telling him this."

"Maybe we can finally hear about Lover Boy," Taehyung said.

"Oh I hope so!" Jimin told him, getting the keys to his apartment from his pocket, "I need a distraction now more than anything."

"See you tonight Chim."

"Bring wine on your way here!" Jimin reminded him before hanging up.

 

~~~

 

"Yoongi! Jin's here! I'm leaving!" Jungkook called out to the empty gym, the light shining only in Yoongi's office.

Almost immediately, the office door opened and Yoongi's head peeked out of it as he looked at the younger, "Kook, be c-"

"I know," Jungkook said, shaking his head at the overly cautious older man, "Be careful."

"Yeah," Yoongi said, nodding, trying to play it cool but couldn't help the build up of anxiety in his stomach.

"I'll be fine, don't worry," Jungkook reassured, "When I come back, we can even train for tomorrow's match!"

"You're still fighting tomorrow?" Yoongi asked, cocking his eyebrow.

"That's a conversation for when I come back!" Jungkook said, hurrying out the door before Yoongi could say anything, "Okay! Bye!"

"Jung-" Yoongi said but stopped himself when the door closed with a screech. His lips curled into a fond smile as he looked at the now closed door, shaking his head as he whispered to himself, "Brat."

Jungkook walked wordlessly to Jin's car, closing the passenger door behind him and putting his seatbelt on.

"Are you going to keep staring at me, or are you actually going to drive?" Jungkook asked, not looking at Jin as he buckled the belt up.

"You're really going to do this?" Jin asked, voice low and serious.

"Would I be here if I wasn't?" Jungkook said, looking up and cocking his head slightly.

"Kook, you know that I don't have much information and after the last time-"

"The past is the past." Jungkook told him, "If I lived and lamented in the past, I wouldn't be here right now."

"You almost died!" Jin told him as if it was new information.

"But I didn't."

"You got stabbed! One inch higher and you wouldn't be here right now!"

"But I'm here," Jungkook said, "I'm alive and I'm here. Now are you going to drive or are we going to keep this up for the rest of the night?"

"Kook..." Jin sighed, hands falling off the steering wheel as he stared at the younger boy, "Are you sure you want to do this? You can back out now and I wouldn't have any hard feelings, I swear."

"I'm doing this!" Jungkook said with conviction, "Not for you and not because Yoongi asked either. I'm doing this for me and I'm doing this because this rat bastard is the only connection we have to whoever put Hoseok in the hospital."

He looked at the older boy with fire in his eyes and his hands in a fist.

"Now," He said, "Are you going to drive or do I have to find my own way to wherever the hell this place is!"

Jin sighed, shifting the gears of the car before he sped off the parking lot and onto the freeway.

"Tell me more about this person," Jungkook said.

"I don't know much," Jin told him, regretfully, "But from what I've been told, this guy was hired. I don't know from who and I don't know why. All I do know is that he was hired by someone in the top ranks to take out someone from our gang....That bullet could have been meant for me."

"Don't blame yourself," Jungkook told him, "You couldn't have known."

"If I didn't send out Hoseok that day..." Jin said, voice trembling as he tried to stay strong.

"Whatever happened, happened and the more you keep thinking about it, the worse it's going to be for you," Jungkook told him, "You and I both know that Hoseok wouldn't blame you for any of this."

"He's not even awake for me to ask him," Jin almost scoffed.

"He will be." Jungkook told him, "He's being weened off the medication. He'll wake up."

"Aren't I supposed to be the one comforting you?" Jin asked, glancing at Jungkook, "I am the older one."

"Older doesn't always mean wiser," Jungkook said, leaning back in the chair with a teasing smile on his face.

"Kook." Jin said, more serious now.

"What?"

"Reach into the glove compartment," He told him, "There's a gun there. Keep it."

Jungkook opened the glove compartment and sure enough there it was, the cold, black, metal gun. He couldn't focus on anything else in there, except for the gun. He reached down and took it in his hands. It had been a while. The cold metal felt heavier in his hands than last time. He turned the gun around, trying to get a feel of it again, trying to remember how it felt to hold a weapon this powerful in his hands, trying to remember what it was like to have to play God.

"You okay?" Jin asked, noticing how quiet the younger boy was.

"Haven't held one of these in a while, that's all," Jungkook told him honestly.

"And?"

"Feels weird."

"Good or bad?" Jin asked.

"Just, weird." Jungkook asked, trying to be nonchalant.

"All you have to do is go in there and get some information out of him," Jin explained, "We need him alive."

"And I'm just going to let him go after? Nothing else?" Jungkook asked.

"He doesn't know who you are," Jin said, "You don't need to do anything more than intimidate him and extort some information out."

"Sounds simple enough," Jungkook said.

"Worst case scenario, you knock him out and bring him in the car."

"Ahh," Jungkook drawled out, "The classic hostage situation."

"We have some equipment back in the warehouse that might prove useful," Jin said, "But then again, that's worst case scenario and we would have to cover our tracks really well."

"You're the getaway car, I'm assuming?" Jungkook asked, cocking an eyebrow.

"I didn't trust anyone else to do it." Jin said, stoically, his voice steely and eyes narrowed into dark slits.

Jungkook leaned back against the chair, gun still weighing heavy in his hands as his fingers slithered around the grip, careful to keep his fingers away from the trigger.

Jin's phone suddenly rang, breaking the wall of silence. With one hand, he gripped onto the steering wheel, while the other reached down and grabbed his phone, bringing it up to his ear.

"Hello?" Jin answered, jaw taut, voice still full of steel and hand gripping the wheel so hard, it turned his knuckles white.

Jungkook glanced at the older boy, thousands of scenarios running through his mind over what the phone call might be.

Suddenly, Jin's jaw eased up, his lips curving into a smile that just grew bigger and bigger as his hands unclenched off the wheel, "Hey Namjoon! I missed you too."

Jungkook shook his head, wanting to laugh at how one boy could make the biggest Mafia Leader in the whole city soft in just two seconds.

"Yeah, I think we should talk too," Jin said, voice soft and understanding.

The younger boy just watched on and Jin nodded and smiled to the phone even though Namjoon couldn't see him.

"Tonight?" Jin asked, "Oh. You're busy? No, no, that's fine! Uhmm.."

Jin glanced at Jungkook, raising an eyebrow silently as if to ask if the job would be complete by then. Jungkook just shrugged and Jin took that as a good sign.

"How about in around an hour and a half?" Jin asked, "We could go to that cafe with the aquarium that you liked?"

A big, dopey, fond smile appeared on Jin's face as he listened to the other boy talk.

"I'll see you then, Joonie," Jin said, unable to keep the smile off his face, "Yeah! I miss you too! I'll see you then."

"You know," Jungkook said with a teasing smile, "You really shouldn't take a call while you're driving. It's one of the top reasons for car crashes, behind only to texting while driving."

"I just gave you a gun from my glove compartment and road safety is your major concern?" Jin asked, cocking his eyebrow.

"I'm just saying..." Jungkook trailed off, "It's a danger, not only to you and me, but to people around us. It's really not safe."

"Neither is a gun!"

"You should think about getting bluetooth," Jungkook suggested, "Not only is it cheap, but it's the safest option."

"Yeah?" Jin challenged, "You literally work for the mafia!"

"Is road safety a joke to you, Jin?!" Jungkook said, "It's not a joke! It's a serious issue!"

"I can't believe you're preaching about road safety with a gun in your hand," Jin said, shaking his head, the fond smile never leaving his face.

"I'm assuming that the person you're endangering our lives for is your boyfriend?" Jungkook asked.

"Not yet."

"What's the hold up?" He asked, leaning his head back against the headrest.

"I told him about the boxing ring," Jin said, "I don't want to lie to him."

"Are you going to tell him about the rest?"

"It literally took him two days just to call me after I told him," Jin said, with a small frown, "I don't know how he's going to take the whole gang thing."

"It's a lot." Jungkook admitted.

"I don't want to lose him," Jin said, sadly, "But I don't want to not have him in my life either. And if I don't tell him about it, and he finds out later....I don't know what his reaction will be."

"Why don't you ease him into it?" Jungkook suggested, "You know, start off small."

"What is that supposed to mean?"

"Well, you did tell him about the boxing ring," Jungkook said, "So build it up from there. Just take him to more matches, let him be by your side and then slowly just tell him about it."

"I don't want him to get involved in the gang," Jin said.

"He's going to have to if he's with you," Jungkook told him, "You know that the more you hide it, the more they're going to come after him."

Jin kept quiet, the gravity of the situation finally hitting him.

"Is involving him a mistake?" Jin asked, putting the car in park as he glanced over at Jungkook.

"If it is, then both of yours to make."

Jin leaned back in his seat, turning the engine off as he let his hands fall from the steering wheel, glancing over at the younger boy whose gaze seemed to have been fixed on the window, eyes scanning the entire premises. 

"Last chance to back out." Jin told him. 

"No way in hell." Jungkook scoffed, unbuckling his seat belt. 

"You sure about this?" 

"Nothing I haven't done before," The younger shrugged nonchalantly, gripping the gun tighter in his hands as he opened the passenger side door carefully, trying to make as minimal noise as possible.

"Jungkook." Jin called, making the younger lean down into the car, within earshot, "We need him alive." 

"Oh he'll be alive alright," He said with a smirk, closing the door gently before muttering, "Can't promise that he'll be in perfect condition though." 

Jungkook treaded lightly, hyperaware that he was going in blindly. He didn't know anything about this guy, neither did he know where he was, or how many people would be in this empty warehouse. He spotted a door on the far right of where he was, and crouched down as he ran towards it, knuckles going white from how hard he was gripping the gun. Jungkook wasn't scared, but he was being slightly more cautious than he usually was. The last time he was on one of these missions, he was too lax which was what got him stabbed in the first place. And now, he had a scar to constantly remind him that he could never be too relaxed on a mission again. 

He gripped the doorknob tight in his hand and slowly twisted it, trying not to scream out of elation at the fact that it wasn't locked. He entered the musty warehouse, the stench of damp, mouldy floors, rotten wood and dirt hit him like a ton of bricks. Jungkook scrunched his nose, trying his best to ignore the stench as his eyes searched the inside of the warehouse looking for any signs of life. The warehouse itself seemed empty and unused, as if it was just being left here to rot. He walked in, eyes still scanning every corner, every shadow, every little piece of unused, mouldy furniture, every little detail of this barely lit warehouse. 

He heard the creak of the floorboard and immediately turned around, pointing his gun at the direction he thought the sounds were coming from. There was another creak and before he could even turn, he felt a blow on his back, splinters biting into his skin as he fell onto the floor from the sheer force of the hit. His gun flew out of his hand, almost across the room as Jungkook tried to get his balance and his breath back. He turned swiftly, feeling the adrenaline run through his veins, the pain being dulled for the moment. He stood up, dusting his hands, with his tongue in his cheek as he came face to face with the man who hit him with the thick wooden plank. 

"Who are you?" Jungkook asked, eyes dark with a fire that wasn't there before, jaw taut and hands balled up into fists by his side. 

"The better question would be - Who are you?" The man asked, his hair pushed back, a cocky smirk on his face and a gun in his jeans, "What are you doing here?" 

"I was in the neighbourhood and I decided to stop by and say my hello's," Jungkook said with a sickly sweet smile, "Didn't your mother ever teach you how to entertain your guests?" 

"Didn't yours ever teach you how to call before coming?" The man told him. 

"I'm in a generous mood," Jungkook told him, "You can either do this the easy way or the hard way." 

"Where's the fun in the easy way," The man smirked,cocking his head slightly as he looked at the younger boy. 

Jungkook scoffed, shaking his head as he sighed. 

Before Jungkook could say anything else, he felt a sharp pain in his jaw. The second punch, hit the side of his stomach. He doubled over in pain, grunting at the sheer force of the weight behind it. All he could focus on was the pain along with the wind being knocked out of him. A normal person would be on the floor right now, clutching their stomach and trying to gain their breath back. But Jungkook wasn't normal. This was what he trained in. He was made up of years of endurance, gunshots and stabbings, all wrapped up in one person. The scars on his body were proof enough that Jungkook was built to take more than one hit before crumbling. He didn't crumble in the ring and he sure as hell wasn't going to crumble in front of this low life. 

More than anything, Jungkook had something to prove to himself. He wanted to know that he could still go on jobs like these for Jin and whoever else in the gang needed it without being riddled with anxiety and the trauma that came with a near death experience. He needed to believe in himself before anyone else could believe in him. This was important to him and he wasn't going to lose. He wasn't called Unbeatable JK for nothing.

He stood up, ignoring the pang of pain that radiated from both his gut, and his jaw. A devilish smirk graced his face, accompanied by the rage and fire that burned in his eyes and the flare of his nostrils. 

"My turn," He growled out, a low rumble in his throat, bearing his teeth.

The man before him looked taken aback for a split second, before composing himself. Jungkook swung his fist, aiming straight for the jaw, the same place that he hit Jungkook in the first time.  He swung a second time, the weight behind this punch tripling before he landed it on his gut. He could hear his fist hit the skin, a familiar sound that barely phased Jungkook, but for some reason, this time, it was more fulfilling than ever. He heard the sound of skin slapping skin echo off the walls, bouncing around before reaching his ears. A smug smirk was on Jungkook's face before he knew it. He pulled back, landing a third punch to the gut before the man doubled down in pain, landing on the floor, clutching his side. 

"Pathetic." Jungkook spat down, kicking the man in the side. 

The man groaned in pain, clutching his side harder, spitting out blood on the dirty, blackened, rotting floorboards. 

"Who are you?" Jungkook asked him, venom in his voice.

The man said nothing. He only clutched his side and groaned in pain. 

"Who are you?!" Jungkook repeated, sterner now, voice dropping an octave. 

He didn't answer. 

Jungkook growled, drawing his foot back and kicking it as hard as he could, aiming for the same side that he had punched. 

The man cried out in pain, breaths coming out shaky as he winced in pain. 

"I'm not going to ask again!" Jungkook said, venom and steel dripping from his voice. 

"I-I'm Joo Wan." The man drawled out, pain lacing his every syllable, "B-But people call me Archer." 

"A couple of weeks ago, someone hired you to carry out a hit on the Kim gang." Jungkook said, "Who did it and why?" 

Joo Wan chuckled weakly, spitting out blood on the rotten wood floorboards, hand pressing against his side, hoping that the pain would go away. 

"Who was it?!" Jungkook asked, foot threatening to kick him again. 

"If you think..." Joo Wan said, almost breathless from the pain and having the wind knocked out of him, "That your weak threats will compare to anything that the person who hired me would do to me, then you're sorely mistaken." 

"I'm going to ask you one more time." Jungkook threatened, "Who hired you and why?!" 

Joo Wan said nothing, he tried to bide his time, his hand slowly snaking down his front, reaching for the gun. Jungkook just about caught the small movement. He let out a dark chuckle, kicking the man in the shin before bending down and snatching the cold gun from his jeans. 

"You thought you could pull a fast one on me?" Jungkook said, shaking his head in disappointment, "And here I thought, you would play fair." 

Jungkook played around with the gun, making a show of cocking the gun and pressing his finger lightly against the trigger as he pointed it around the warehouse. 

"Now," Jungkook said, circling around the man with his gun in his hand, "Either you tell me what I want to know, or I pull the trigger and blow your dick off. The choice is yours." 

"Do your worst!" Joo Wan said, spitting blood on the floor. 

"Oh, really?" Jungkook said, cocking an eyebrow. 

He aimed directly in between the mans pants, right at the crotch, finger on the trigger. Just as he was about to pull it, he quickly moved the barrel of the gun right near his right thigh, and pulled the trigger. Joo Wan flinched, freezing for a split second before letting out a sigh of relief. 

Jungkook cocked the gun again. 

"I never miss." Jungkook warned, "Now, are you going to tell me what I want to know, or should I shoot your dick off and leave you to bleed to death right in the middle of this filthy warehouse, where no one will find you." 

"Fine." Joo Wan conceded, "I'll tell you everything." 

"Good boy." Jungkook said with a cocky smirk, "Start talking." 

"A couple of weeks ago, a man by the name of Jaehwan came to me," Joo Wan said, chest heavy, pain radiating by his side, and jaw hurting, "He wanted me to carry out a hit on the Kim clan. He said that he would pay three times my normal amount." 

"Who was the hit ordered on?" Jungkook asked, feeling the muscles in his jaw tighten. 

"I don't know," Joo Wan said honestly, "All he did was show me a picture a couple of hours before and then, I had to go." 

"Did you get the right person?" Jungkook asked. 

"No." He said, shaking his head, "I got the wrong person." 

"And by Jaehwan, you mean..." 

"The Hwan clan." 

Jungkook nodded, pocketing Joo Wan's gun before walking over to where his gun dropped in the midst of the fight and taking that in his hands too. 

"Thanks for your help," Jungkook said with a cocky smirk, "It's been a pleasure." 

"Can't say the same." 

"Oh, you might want to get that checked out," Jungkook said, pointing vaguely at Joo Wan's body, "It's unsanitary in here." 

Jungkook closed the warehouse door as he was leaving, prideful and happy at the fact that he was able to pull this mission off successfully and all by himself. 

He walked over to Jin's car and got in. 

"I got you a present." He said immediately. 

"Before you say anything," Jin said, with a sigh, "I just need to know. Is he alive?" 

"He is." Jungkook nodded, "A little bruised, but he'll survive." 

"Oh thank god!" Jin said, letting out a sigh of relief, "I heard a gunshot!" 

"I did what needed to be done." Jungkook said.

"You shot him?!" 

"I shot the floor near him." Jungkook corrected, "I did punch him a couple of times, but the most he'll get is probably a bruised or fractured rib. Nothing major." 

"At least he's alive." Jin said, starting up the car again. 

"Aren't you curious about your present?" Jungkook asked. 

"If it's human teeth again-" 

"That was one time! And it was hilarious!" Jungkook defended. 

"What's my present?" 

"I got you a gun!" Jungkook said, presenting it to Jin with a grin on his face. 

"Thanks," Jin said with a chuckle, "Put it in the glove box with the other gun." 

Jungkook opened the glove compartment, putting the two guns down and then closing it back up, leaning back against his seat, the adrenaline wearing off. 

"Are you hurt?" Jin asked. 

"Wow!" Jungkook said, "You managed to hold your tongue for two minutes." 

"I was worried." 

"I know." 

"Did he hurt you?" Jin asked, glancing at him, trying to see if he could spot any visible injuries. 

"Nothing too bad." Jungkook said, "Just a punch or two. I've survived worse." 

"Did you get anything out of him?" 

"Yeah." Jungkook breathed, "It was the Hwan clan who ordered the hit." 

"What?" 

"The hit wasn't even meant for Hoseok." 

"Who was it meant for?" Jin asked. 

"I don't know." Jungkook said, "But whoever it is, they aren't safe, and neither are any of us."

 

~~~

 

The strap of Jimin's bag hung from his shoulder as he nervously entered the gym. It was 9.58am and he had never been more scared or nervous in his life. 

Yesterday with Jungkook didn't feel like a mistake. There was no part of him that regretted that decision, but, if Yoongi didn't like it, then he would be kicked out of the gym. It's even worse when Jimin realised that he: 

a. Didn't have many more days left till he had to finish the undercover report 

and 

b. When Jimin specifically told Yoongi that he didn't have an interest in hooking up with Jungkook and that he was at the gym to learn self defence, not sleep around. 

"Oh, Jimin! You're right on time!" Yoongi said, glancing at the clock that was hanging on the wall. 

"What?" 

"Come on! Get warmed up! I want to see your form." Yoongi said, doing some stretches of his own. 

"Wait, I'm still in the gym?" Jimin asked, frozen to the floor as he stared at the ring in the middle of the gym.

"Why wouldn't you be?" Yoongi asked. 

"Y-yesterday, you told me.." Jimin said, unable to finish his sentence, mind still reeling. 

"Oh that!" Yoongi said, "Listen, kid, what you do with your personal life is none of my business, until it starts affecting my gym, then it becomes my business. But at no point, will I tell you who you can and cannot date. What happened yesterday is none of my business, but Jungkook and I had some stuff to take care of which is why I sent you home, not because I caught you and Jungkook making out like a bunch of teenagers." 

"Oh." Jimin said. 

"Yeah. Oh." Yoongi repeated, with a little smile. 

"Is everything okay?" Jimin asked. 

"What?" 

"You said that you and Jungkook had some personal things to deal with," Jimin told him, "Is everything okay? Is there anything I can do to help?" 

"Oh, uhh, no, yeah, it's fine." Yoongi said, clearing his throat, not used to anyone asking if he needed an extra hand. 

"Are you sure?" Jimin said, more than he asked, "You told me that we were family now; and as family, I want to help my own family as much as possible. So, if there's anything I can do..."

Yoongi smiled at the younger boy. He really was as sweet as he looked. Was he really the type of person to get involved in the gang? The same gang where there were deaths, and massacre's sometimes. Where there was lies on top of lies, on top of brutal tortures and killings just to get what you wanted....Was Yoongi really going to involve Jimin in this? Trust is one thing, but putting someone in danger when they weren't meant for that life and could barely get the right stance to throw a punch is another... 

"Maybe next time," Yoongi said with a smile, "Now come up here and show me your form." 

Jimin smiled up at Yoongi, his pink hair falling in his eyes as he dropped his bag down on the benches before climbing up to the ring. 

~~~

 

The worst part about fights were the bruises. Not because they hurt. Jungkook could take pain, that never mattered to him. But it served as a constant reminder that someone had the upper hand on him. He hated bruises. Scars, he didn't mind. But bruises were just a constant reminder of how weak you were. How you let someone hit you enough to leave a mark, but not hard enough that you could say you suffered. 

There were bright purple mark on Jungkook's right jawline and more that littered his body. He hated it. He wanted nothing more than to go back to Joo Wan and beat the living shit out of him until all that was left were bruises on his body. 

But all he could do was train. He would train, and train, and train, and train, until the bruise faded to red, yellow and then completely disappeared. He would train until he was certain that no one could get close enough to put bruises on his body ever again. 

That's why he was at the gym extra early today. He knew he had a fight tonight, and he knew how much Yoongi hated when he fought while he was injured, but until Yoongi said no, Jungkook would still go. 

He walked into the gym, bag hanging off his shoulder, phone in hand, but paused as soon as he saw the pink haired boy, with sweat running down his forehead, eyes slitted in concentration.

"Jab. Jab. Hook. Jab.Jab. Block!" Yoongi instructed, Jimin following his orders perfectly. 

Jungkook was impressed at how naturally gifted Jimin was. He wasn't the best, but he was still learning, and for a beginner, he was really good. 

"You need to bring your right foot forward." Jungkook called out, making both the men stop and look at him. 

He could see Jimin flushing at the sight of Jungkook, cheeks going red. Jungkook couldn't help but wonder exactly how far down the blush travelled. His eyes raked Jimin's body, taking in the sight of the pink haired man before him. 

"His form is fine." Yoongi insisted, not oblivious to the way the two boys were acting around each other. 

"Not when he's punching," Jungkook said, turning to Jimin, "Show him a hook." 

"What?"

"A hook." Jungkook said, "Show him." 

"Oh, uhh, okay," Jimin stuttered. 

He fixed his stance, hyperaware of the two pairs of eyes on him and twisted his body as he threw the punch. 

"See, right there," Jungkook said, pointing to his foot, "When he twists, the foot moves." 

"Hmm..." Yoongi said, "Throw it again." 

Jimin repeated the gesture, trying not to move his foot, but failed. 

"That's why your hook is weak," Yoongi muttered to himself. 

"When will you learn that I'm never wrong, Yoongi," Jungkook boasted. 

"You're never right either," Yoongi said. 

Jimin stood there, still not able to look Jungkook in the eyes, both embarrassed and shy, not knowing what yesterday meant for either of them. He couldn't ignore the fact that the first time he even came to this gym, he found Jungkook in the exact same position, making out with somebody else. Maybe he shouldn't read too much into it. He definitely shouldn't. Jimin knew that the only reason he was at this gym was to get information to save his job, and that's exactly what he needed to focus on. He couldn't let someone, especially not Jungkook, get in the way of that. 

"Jimin, take five," Yoongi said, taking the mitts off his hand, as he walked over to the ropes, leaning against it.

Jungkook placed his gym back on the benches, sitting down next to it as he took out his bandages. 

"What are you doing here so early, anyway?" Yoongi asked, leaning his weight on it. 

"Fight's tonight." Jungkook said, starting to wrap his hand. 

"You're going?" Yoongi asked, cocking an eyebrow. 

"You say that like you didn't know," Jungkook said, not taking his eye off the bandage as he continued to wrap his hand. 

"You are aware of what happened last night, aren't you?" 

"I was there." Jungkook said, "How could I not be?" 

"And you're still going?" 

"A bruised rib didn't stop me last week, why would a small bruised jaw stop me?" He said, taping the bandage before moving on to the other hand. 

"What happened last night?" Jimin asked, in a small voice, unsure if he even had the right to ask this question. 

Both the men looked at the small, pink haired boy. Yoongi cocked an eyebrow while Jungkook smiled endearingly at him wondering how it was, that even with boxing gloves on his hand, he looked incredibly cute. 

"I-I didn't mean to-" Jimin stuttered, wondering if he had crossed a line. 

"Nothing big," Jungkook said, "Just a scuffle, that's all." 

"A scuffle big enough to give you that, obviously," Jimin said, pointing at Jungkook's jaw with the glove on his hand.

"You should have seen the other guy." 

"That's what they all say when they lose a fight." Jimin told him. 

Yoongi had to hold back a chuckle as he looked at Jungkook who couldn't believe what Jimin had said. 

"You do realise that my name is literally Unbeatable JK for a reason, don't you?" Jungkook told him with furrowed eyebrows. 

"Making other people call you 'Unbeatable' doesn't really make you unbeatable," Jimin said. 

"I really like you, Jimin," Yoongi interrupted with a gummy smile. 

Jimin giggled, looking at Yoongi with crescent eyes and chubby cheeks, and Jungkook swore that his heart skipped a beat. But he ignored it, blaming the fight from yesterday even though he knew that it had nothing to do with the way the pink hair boy affected him. 

"Weren't you supposed to fix his form?" Jungkook told Yoongi. 

"This is way more fun," Yoongi said, "Jimin, continue." 

Jimin just giggled, and Jungkook wanted nothing more than to punch the sandbag by the corner. There was no way, someone could be this cute! 

"You guys can stand there and laugh all you want! I'm going to train for tonight!" Jungkook said, taping his hand and setting the bandage down. 

"Jimin, do you have anything planned tonight?" Yoongi asked. 

"No, why?" 

"Do you want to come to the fight?" He asked, "It would be good for you to see how it's actually done. Plus, now that you know certain techniques, you can observe how the other fighters use them." 

"Yeah! I'll be there!" He said with a bright smile, "Uhmm, can I bring a friend?" 

"Friend?" Jungkook asked, from the side, holding on to the sandbag, "What friend?" 

"My best friend?" Jimin asked, not sure what he was getting at. 

"Oh." Jungkook said, clearing his throat, "Yeah, sure!"

"Come on," Yoongi said, shaking his head at how obvious Jungkook was being, walking back to the middle of the ring, "We need to work on your form." 

 

~~~

 

There was a knock on Jungkook's door just as he was taping up his bandaged hand. He furrowed his eyebrows in confusion. Since when did anyone knock on doors? Much less a door of an underground fighting ring. 

He turned around as soon as he heard the outside noise filter in. 

"Oh, it's you," He said, turning back to check on his bandages one last time. 

"Yoongi wanted me to tell you that the fight is just about finishing up," Jimin said, walking in, closing the door behind him, "You're up next." 

"Great." Jungkook said, standing up, flexing his fingers. 

Jimin stood around, conflicted between saying something and keeping quiet about it. 

"You look like you're mentally constipated," Jungkook commented, seemingly nonchalant. 

"Thank you?" He said, unsure as to what response the other boy wanted. 

"Do you have something to say to me?" Jungkook asked, cocking an eyebrow. 

"Yes." 

"Are you going to say it or, would you like a formally written invitation before you do?" 

"If you're offering to write an invitation, then I'm not opposed to it," Jimin said. 

"I was being sarcastic." Jungkook said with a roll of his eyes. 

"And they say that chivalry is dead," Jimin sighed. 

"What do you want to say?" Jungkook asked him. 

"Does it hurt?" Jimin asked, shyly pointing at the big bruise on his jaw. 

"Are you worried?" 

"You're not," Jimin said, "So I figured that I would be for the both of us." 

"Is this your way of saying that you care about me?" Jungkook said. 

"Is this your way of saying that you don't care about yourself?" Jimin retorted. 

"Are you ever going to give me a straight answer?" He asked. 

"Hate to break it to you, but neither me, or my answers are straight," Jimin joked. 

Jungkook cracked a smile. 

"You might want to hide that before people actually think that you possess emotions," Jimin said, unable to not smile at Jungkook's infectious grin. 

The cheers leaking through the door, interrupted them. 

"I'm up." Jungkook said, standing up and taking his shirt off, throwing it on the benches. 

Jimin was convinced that if he were a cartoon, his eyes would bulge out of his head, and steam would release from his ears. He couldn't take his eyes off Jungkook's defined body. The last time he was in the locker room with Jungkook, all he could focus on were the bruises. But now, the bruises have faded, all but one, on the side of his hip. 

"Take a picture doll, it'll last longer," Jungkook said, cockily. 

"Does that hurt too?" Jimin asked, pointing at the bruise, hoping that the heat from his cheeks didn't give away the fact that he was drooling over Jungkook's abs. 

"Hate to break it to you, Strawberry Shortcake," Jungkook said, "But this is part and parcel of the job. I'm used to it." 

"Just because you get used to it, doesn't mean it hurts any less." Jimin told him, eyes full of sincerity as he looked at Jungkook. 

The cheers got louder as the match outside finished, both men not taking their eyes off of each other. 

"You're up." Jimin told him with a small smile, "Good luck! I'll be cheering for you." 

With that, Jimin walked passed Jungkook. He opened the door and looked back, smiling at the man, before he made his way to the stands. 

"Where were you?" Taehyung asked, as Jimin took his seat next to him. 

"Figuring out that I have a muscle kink," Jimin told him with a sigh. 

"I feel like there's a story there..." Taehyung told him. 

"I was in Jungkook's locker room," Jimin said to him, looking back at the ring where the introductions of the fighters were being made, "We were talking and then he took his shirt off and-" 

"Wait, what?" 

"He had to go to the ring! It was his turn!" Jimin said, in defence. 

"Oh so, 'one thing led to another'," Taehyung mocked. 

"Shut up!" Jimin said, nudging him with his shoulder, "I'll explain everything later." 

"Look, your boyfriend's coming out!" 

"Not my boyfriend!" Jimin hissed.

"There's still time." Taehyung teased.

"Shut up and watch the match," Jimin muttered to Taehyung, feeling his cheeks heat up. 

Jimin watched as Jungkook entered the ring, looking completely different than when Jimin saw him not even two minutes ago in the locker room. His eyes were full of fire, fists clenching and unclenching. Jimin then looked at his opponent and immediately felt a weight grow on his chest, out of nervousness. The man opposite Jungkook was twice as big as him. He was almost as tall as Jungkook too, but Jungkook didn't seem to care. Jimin's eyes were full of panic as they scanned the room for Yoongi, to see how he was reacting. Once Jimin found Yoongi, he was appalled by the fact neither one of the men seemed to care about the size difference. He wanted nothing more than to scream to get Jungkook out of the ring. But he couldn't. 

"Chimmy?" Taehyung said. 

Jimin looked at him, wide eyes full of fear, "What?" 

"You okay?" He asked in a soft voice. 

"Yeah, why?" Jimin lied. 

Taehyung said nothing. He simply brought his hand that was being crushed by Jimin's so hard until his skin turned white, up to Jimin's view. 

"Oh." Jimin said, quickly removing his hand and muttering an apology, "Sorry." 

"What is it?" Taehyung asked. 

"Look at him, Tae!" Jimin said, pointing to the ring, "He's bigger than Jungkook!" 

"So?" 

"What do you mean so?!" Jimin asked, "He's going to get hurt." 

"Jungkook isn't called Unbeatable for nothing, Jimin," Taehyung told him, "He's going to be fine." 

"I hope so." Jimin muttered to himself, giving the ring his full attention as the bell went off, signalling the start of the fight.

Jimin sat on the edge of his seat, holding his breath as he watched Jungkook intently, hoping that no harm would come to him. 

Jungkook circled the ring, waiting for the man to make his first move. He already knew that with the bruise on his jaw, and the other on his hip, he was giving the man two easy targets. Two predictable targets. And that was exactly what Jungkook was counting on - The man being predictable, and sure enough, when he saw the fist aiming for his hip, he couldn't help but smirk. Jungkook pulled back, the fist missing his hip by just a hair. Using that opportunity, Jungkook swung his fist to the man's lowered jaw, feeling the bone beneath his skin crack just a little. He pulled back, landing another hit on the same place, the crowds cheers like a melody to his ears. 

Jimin felt like he could breathe easier now that he was watching Jungkook getting the upper hand. But just as easy as that breath came, it was snatched away. All Jimin did was blink before he saw Jungkook clutch the bruised side of his hip, almost jumping back from the blow that the man manage to land. Jimin jumped off his seat, Taehyung pulling him back down, holding his hand for support. Jimin couldn't help but bite his lip out of fear, and worry. 

Jungkook looked up. The second Jimin saw the look in his eyes, it was like he cowered into Taehyung. His eyes, once full of fire, was now full of darkness. The same darkness Jimin saw when he watched Jungkook fight the first time. It was one that he had never seen before. Jungkook stalked over to the other man, and Jimin could practically hear the growl from where he was seated as Jungkook pulled back his fist, that was now clenched, harder than ever and punched the man. Blood splattered out of his nose almost immediately, landing on the bandages on Jungkook's arm, the toned muscles of his torso, and on the white of the ring floor. The man keeled over, hands flying to his now broken nose. Jungkook used this opportunity, and grabbed him, landing a few more punches on whatever exposed skin he could find, until the man couldn't take anymore and fell on the floor. And even then, Jungkook didn't let up. 

Jimin and Taehyung seemed to be the only silent ones in the crowd. The rest were screaming for more blood, loving the action in front of them, but Jimin and Taehyung were in shock. They had never seen such darkness, such violence... 

It took Yoongi to go into the ring and pull Jungkook off, for him to finally let the man go. While they disappeared, and the bell sounded, the man laid there, in the ring, almost covered in his own blood. 

Jimin got up.

"Where are you going?" Taehyung asked, afraid to hear the answer. 

"I need to see him." 

"Are you insane? Did you not just see what I saw?!" Taehyung almost yelled at him. 

"He won't hurt me." 

"You don't know that!" He yelled. 

"I do," Jimin said, repeating himself, "He won't hurt me." 

"At least give him some time to calm down!" Taehyung almost begged. 

"Wait here." Jimin said, walking off to the locker room, leaving behind a scared and worried Taehyung. 

Before Jimin could even reach the room, he saw Yoongi walking out. Yoongi muttered something under his breath while shaking his head in disapproval as he walked away. 

Jimin didn't even bother to knock before he entered the room. He closed the door behind him, eyes searching for Jungkook. 

"You shouldn't be here." A gruff, hoarse, low voice muttered behind him. 

Jimin jumped out of shock, hand clutching his chest, "Oh, you scared me." 

"You shouldn't be here." He repeated. 

"Are you alright?" Jimin asked him, eyes scanning his body, looking for any signs of injuries. 

"Why are you here?" Jungkook asked him, eyes still dark.

Jimin didn't like the way his eyes looked. It wasn't the way it looked before the fight.

"I wanted to check on you," He said softly. 

"Leave." Was all Jungkook said, in a rough voice.

"No." Jimin said, with a shaky voice. 

"What?" Jungkook asked, cocking an eyebrow. 

"I said, no!" Jimin said, taking a stand. 

Jungkook walked up to him, getting in his face. Jimin could feel his hot breath fan over his face. He could feel the heat from his sweaty body almost on him. 

"I could hurt you, right here, right now," Jungkook said. 

"You won't hurt me," Jimin said in a voice barely over a whisper.

"You don't know that." Jungkook almost growled out. 

Jimin brought his hand up, slowly, so that Jungkook wouldn't get startled. Jungkook's eyes followed Jimin's hand until it landed right on his cheek. Jimin cupped his cheek, his thumb rubbing slow circles on the supple, yet slightly sweaty cheek. 

To say Jungkook was surprised would be an understatement. He had never had anyone be soft with him. Whenever he took someone home, it was always rough. It was finding each other in the dark, it was bruising touches, profanity's and curses, it was purple on skin, hickeys in the morning. It was never gentle words, or caresses. It was never sweet words, or burning, lingering touches. 

Jungkook wanted to run. Every fibre of his being was telling him to run! He was never meant for soft. He was never meant to be vulnerable. He was the product of destruction and broken things.... He was going to pull back, Jungkook swears that he was. But then Jimin spoke, and he forgot all about running. 

"There it is," Jimin said in a soft voice, smile following, thumb still caressing his cheek.

 Jimin stared into his eyes, thumb rubbing soft, small circles into Jungkook's cheek. The darkness melted away from his eyes, making Jimin's smile bigger and bigger. 

The dark, black melted and Jimin could see him clearly again. The pools of copper and honey that were Jungkook's eyes were clear as day. The shine, and the twinkle of the stars returned, completely obliterating the darkness. His eyes were wide, and full of a shine of curiosity and Jungkook stared back at him, scanning his face. 

"Welcome back," Jimin said, pink hair falling on his face, smile never leaving. 

"What are you doing to me?" Jungkook couldn't help but say, feeling slightly breathless just by looking at the pink haired boy. 

Jimin was just about to respond but Jungkook grabbed his face and smashed his lips onto Jimin's. Jimin froze for a couple of seconds, his brain taking time to catch up with the situation. Nothing about the kiss was gentle. It was passionate, and hot, and their lips moved in languidly over each other. 

Jungkook moved his hand to Jimin's hip, pulling him closer to him as Jimin's hair moved from Jungkook's cheek to his hair, tangling his fingers with the soft, slightly sweaty hair at the nape of his neck, pulling it, wanting to hear Jungkook groan his name and no one else's. 

Jimin pulled back first, resting his head against Jungkook's forehead, panting slightly. 

"I have to go." Jimin said, in a soft voice, "I'll see you tomorrow." 

He didn't wait for a response before he was untangling himself from Jungkook, breathless. 

Jungkook stood there, mind a mess, but only one name on his mind - Park Jimin. 

Jimin closed the door behind him, walking out and finding a very worried Taehyung.

Taehyung took in Jimin's swollen lips and messed up, wrinkly clothes, and his mussed up hair, and shook his head in disapproval. 

"What are you doing, Jimin?" He asked, worried. 

"I know what I'm doing." Jimin insisted. 

"Do you, Jimin?" Taehyung asked again. 

"Let's go." Jimin said, not wanting to answer the question. 

Did he know what he was doing...or was he just hoping that everything would fall into place? Because, every time he looked at Jungkook, it was like the newspaper, and his career didn't matter. There was this part of him that just wanted to protect the man. The kisses didn't help either, but Jimin.... 

Jimin knew exactly what he was doing. Right? 

 

Chapter Text

Jimin could hear his phone buzzing and vibrating on the wooden side-table, but chose to ignore it, hoping that whoever was calling would get the hint. But it didn't stop. With a groan, he turned over in his bed and reached out blindly for his phone, pulling it off the charger.

"Hello?" He answered with a hoarse voice, still groggy with sleep.

"Jimin." The voice breathed, almost panting.

"Yoongi?" Jimin asked, sitting up slightly, feeling the wall for the light switch, "Yoongi, is everything okay?"

"Yeah, it's fine." He answered quickly, "Jimin, do you remember those odd jobs we were talking about where I would pay you to do something?"

"Yeah?" Jimin answered, unsure of what Yoongi was insinuating.

"Are you up for one right now?"

"Sure," Jimin said.

"Okay, great!" Yoongi said, voice heavier now, "I won't be coming in to the gym today so-"

"Is everything okay?" Jimin asked immediately.

"Uhh, yeah, it's fine." Yoongi said, "Look, all you have to do is open the gym in an hour okay? I'll text you the details of where the spare key and everything is."

"Yeah, sounds good." Jimin said.

"Okay good." Yoongi said, as if suddenly rushed, "I have to go."

"Yoongi are you-" Jimin started but Yoongi cut him off.

"Just open the gym and maybe like clean up or whatever," Yoongi said quickly and then in a low, stern voice added, "Oh and Jimin, my office is completely off limits."

Jimin wanted to ask so many questions, but was immediately met with the dial tone. He stared at the now black screen of his phone as if that would provide him with answers. With a press of a button, the screen flashed a bright pink with Taehyung, Jimin and Namjoon as the screensaver, the time written in white standing out against the pink hue of the background. 4:40am.

Why did Yoongi ask him to open the gym so early?

A part of Jimin thought that this was a trick somehow; that this was to test how trustworthy he was. But another part of him knew that something bigger was at play here, something that no one but Yoongi knew.

Jimin just shook his head, and blamed all those thoughts on the fact that he was sleep deprived and incredibly groggy. He was clearly overthinking it. All he had to do was open the gym and clean. How hard could that be? Plus, he most probably will be alone seeing as how Jungkook always came after lunch. Maybe Jimin could even do some digging.

But for now, he had the hardest task of all - Trying to get out of bed.

 

~~~

 

 

Jungkook's lips moved fiercely and hotly against the other's. Wet, sloppy noises filling the room as Jungkook stripped the smaller boy, piece by piece, pushing him onto the bed. His eyes were dark with lust as he looked at the almost naked boy beneath him.

Truth be told, Jungkook didn't even know his name. All he knew was that he was horny and needed to get a certain pink haired boy out of his mind, and sex was the only way he knew how to cope. And why wouldn't it be a great coping mechanism? Jungkook was hot. He knew he was. He could feel the stares, and the eyes on him every time he entered a room, and the fact that he was a boxer with muscles and a toned body certainly did help.

"Are you going to keep staring at me, or are you actually going to do something?" The man said, cocking an eyebrow as he looked at Jungkook.

Jungkook growled, practically leaping onto the bed and reattaching their lips, moving them against the smaller boys.

"Off," The man said, tugging at Jungkook's thin cotton shirt.

Jungkook pulled back, yanking the shirt off his body and throwing it to one side. He saw the smaller boy lick his lips, eyes taking in every inch of exposed skin. He sat up, hands deftly working at Jungkook's belt before tugging the zipper down.

At times like this, Jungkook would usually enjoy this. He would enjoy seeing how desperate someone was to just have a taste of him, to see his reactions as they try their best to elicit any sort of pleasure from him. But right now, Jungkook just wasn't feeling it.

Wrong.
This just felt wrong.
These aren't the hands he wants on his body. This isn't the person he wants underneath him.
Nothing about this is right.
Wordlessly, Jungkook pushed the man's hands off him, climbing off the bed.

"Hey! Where are you going?" The man screamed from the bed.

Jungkook ignored it as he zipped himself up, doing up his belt. He bent over and picked his shirt off the floor and exited the room, ignoring the profanities and curses that were tossed at him from the back.

This was wrong! Everything was wrong!

He was meant to have sex with that guy and then leave! But he couldn't even do that! What was going on with him? Why was he acting this way?! This was never a problem for him before!

God! Jungkook used to be covered in hickies after every fight! He used to be able to just look at someone and have them on their knees for him. But now...Now he didn't want any of that and he couldn't figure out why.

Jungkook stopped mid stride. Was it because of Jimin? Was all of this just because of a pink haired boy that he kissed twice?!
No. It couldn't be! Jungkook never fell for anyone.

He wasn't made for love. Jungkook was a culmination of destruction. He destroyed everything that he touched. There was no way that Jeon Jungkook, the boxer and a member of a gang, was made to love someone who could barely throw a punch.

This wasn't him. He didn't do emotions. Love, happiness, warmth....None of that was familiar to Jungkook.

He shook his head. He needed to let all this pent up energy out, and there was only one place to do it.

 

~~~

 

Jimin was in the middle of mopping up the floor of the gym, beads of sweat forming on his forehead. As much as he would have liked to investigate, something in his gut told him that he shouldn't. He knew that if he worked at this long and hard enough, Jungkook and Yoongi would come to trust him. There was something about this situation that wasn't sitting right with him.

There was some part of Jimin that was screaming at him that this wasn't just a gym. How could this be a gym when the only people he had ever seen in there were only Yoongi and Jungkook? This definitely wasn't a proper gym and Jimin knew it. He was going to get to the bottom of this, and expose the entire underground boxing ring, and get his job back! Maybe he would even earn himself a promotion and a salary raise! That would be amazing.

While he was in the middle of his daydream, he heard the front door creak.

"Sorry! We aren't opened till 9!" Jimin called out, still mopping the floor.

"Where's Yoongi?" The deep voice asked.

Jimin turned around, "Who are you?"

"Who am I? Who the hell are you?"

"I asked you first!" Jimin said, leaning against the wooden handle of the mop, cocking an eyebrow to look intimidating.

The man just scoffed, "Where's Yoongi?"

"Not here." Jimin told him, "Now leave."

"Do you not know who I am?!"

"If I knew, I wouldn't have asked you, now would I?" Jimin said with attitude.

"Listen here you little shit," The man spat, getting up in Jimin's face, "You're messing with the wrong person."

"So are you," Was all Jimin could think to say, "Now leave before I make you."

"What are you going to do? Weave some cotton candy from your hair?"

"Phones exist. Police exists." Jimin said, "Do the math."

The man simply moved his shirt slightly to the side, his black gun peeking out from his jean pocket, "Want to try that again, sweetheart?"

"That's a gun." Jimin said, mouth dropping along with the wooden handle of the mop.

"I have a gun. You don't." The man said, waving his gun around mockingly, voice low and dangerous, "Do the math."

Jimin didn't even have time to think before the front door creaked again. He peeked slightly and saw Jungkook walking through, looking slightly distracted but mostly unbothered.

"Jungkook leave." Was all Jimin said.

"What?" He asked, looking up, confused, eyes darting between the two men.

"He has a gun," Jimin said, trying to sound calm, but voice faltering, "Leave, Jungkook! Now!"

The man turned around, but Jimin moved quickly, forcing himself in the middle of Jungkook and the man.

He turned around, practically screaming at Jungkook, "Leave!"

"Jimin, do you know who he is?" Jungkook asked, slowly.

"No! And I don't care! He has a goddamn gun!" Jimin shouted, "Why the hell aren't you gone yet?! Leave, idiot!"

"Jin, put the gun away." Jungkook said.

"What?" Jimin asked, looking back and forth between the two men.

"He really doesn't know who I am." Jin said, tucking his gun in the front pocket of his jeans.

"You really..." Jungkook said, shaking his head.

"What?" Jimin asked, the adrenaline from fear still coursing through his veins.

"Jimin, you really didn't know who he was?" Jungkook asked.

"No! He just came in here, asked for Yoongi and then took his goddamn gun out!" Jimin said, voice going higher and higher with each word.

"You know the janitor?" Jin asked Jungkook, completely ignoring Jimin's presence.

"I'm not a janitor, you terrorist!" Jimin shouted.

"Jin, this is Jimin, Yoongi took him in." Jungkook introduced, "Jimin, this is Jin. He's a friend."

"Some friend you have!" Jimin said, "You don't just wave your gun in someone's face, dude! Actually, you shouldn't even have a gun! Why the hell do you have a gun?!"

"I don't have time for this," Jin muttered, looking at Jungkook, "Where's Yoongi?"

"I don't know," Jungkook said, "He should be here."

"He's not coming in today," Jimin said.

"How do you know?" Jin asked, finally acknowledging Jimin.

"He called me in the morning and asked if I could open the gym," Jimin answered.

Jungkook and Jin looked at each other, as if communicating with each other, but Jimin couldn't figure out what was going on.

"I-Is something wrong? Is Yoongi in trouble?" Jimin asked.

Jin looked at Jungkook, cocking his head toward Jimin, "Does he know?"

"No." Jungkook said, shaking his head.

"Office. Now!"

"But Yoongi said that no one could go in his office!" Jimin said quickly.

"I don't count." Jungkook told Jimin, brushing past him as he took a key out of his pocket and opened the locked office door, Jin trailing behind him.

"But -" Jimin tried to say but Jin closed the door on his face.

"He talks a lot." Jin told him.

"He really didn't know who you were?" Jungkook asked.

"No, why?"

"No reason," Jungkook told him, shaking his head. But all that was going through his mind was, 'Jimin stood in front of a gun. For me. He doesn't even know me...Why? Why would he put himself in danger like that?'

"Kook! Focus!" Jin said, snapping his fingers in front of his face.

"What?"

"Yoongi!"

"Did you tell him about the Hwan clan?" Jungkook asked.

"Yeah. I told him after your fight last night."

"Shit! You don't think that he..."

"He isn't that stupid," Jin said, thinking for a moment before adding, "Is he?"

"Was he at the hospital?"

"No," Jin said, "I just came from there."

"Why were you looking for him in the first place?" Jungkook asked.

"I need him to do some digging."

"You found a lead?"

"Potentially," Jin said, "But I'm not confident. We don't really have a lot to go on."

"I could try," Jungkook offered.

"You're worse than my grandma when it comes to technology, Kook," Jin laughed.

"I'm learning!" He defended.

"This is more technical," Jin said, "I really need Yoongi."

"What if he's-"

"Don't." Jin said, stopping him, a dark look in his eyes, "He wouldn't."

"You know him, Jin," Jungkook sighed, "He doesn't think straight when it comes to Hobi."

"I can't even have people out looking for him!" Jin sighed, running his fingers through his hair.

"What now?"

"We could go?" Jin suggested.

"And leave this place unarmed? No way!"

"This place?" Jin asked, cocking an eyebrow, "You sure you meant the place and not him?"

"He's no one." Jungkook said, firmly.

"He's definitely someone," Jin countered, "No one would be willing to jump in front of a gun for someone they barely knew."

"This isn't about him."

"Isn't it?" Jin said.

"This is about Yoongi!" Jungkook said.

"Alright," Jin said, sighing, "Just, let me think! I'll come up with something." 

"We should take a drive to the warehouse Archer was in," Jungkook suggested, "He might just be there. I mean, you did just tell him about everything, right?" 

"I didn't tell him where Archer was, though," Jin said, "I barely found the place, I don't think Yoongi would." 

"He's Yoongi," Jungkook reminded, "He finds everything."

"What if this isn't about Hobi?" Jin asked.

"What could it be about?" 

"I don't know! I have nothing to go on!" Jin said, annoyed. 

"Look," Jungkook said, taking out his phone, "I'll just try calling him." 

"You think I haven't tried that!" 

"Well, I haven't!" Jungkook told him, dialling Yoongi's number on his phone.

There was a knock on the office door just before Jungkook could press the call button. 

"What do you want Strawberry Shortcake?!" Jin shouted. 

Jimin opened the door, gingerly, "Umm-" 

"What is it?" Jin asked. 

"Yoongi's here." 

"What?" Jungkook asked. 

"He's here....Yoongi's here." Jimin said, pointing vaguely behind him. 

 "Is he okay? Is he hurt?" Jungkook asked, not bothering to wait for a response as he pushed past Jimin, throwing the door open. His eyes scanned the entire gym, looking for the older boy. 

He spotted Yoongi on the bleachers with his head hung in his hands. 

"Yoongi!" He shouted, practically running to him, "Where the hell have you been?!" 

"What happened?" Jin asked, more calmly. 

"I don't know." Yoongi answered, shaking his head. 

"Where were you?" Jin asked. 

"I went by the Hwan clan's area," Yoongi answered. 

"Are you stupid?! Why in the hell would you do that?! Do you know what could have happened if they-" 

"I know." Yoongi said softly, cutting Jungkook off.

"God, Yoongi! You keep lecturing me about doing stupid shit and then you go and pull this kind of crap off like -" 

"I know, Kook! I know!" Yoongi said, louder now. 

"Tell us what happened," Jin said, firmer now. 

"I don't know," Yoongi repeated, shaking his head, "I was screaming at Jungkook in the locker room about being reckless in the ring, and then when I went out, you told me everything about Archer and the Hwan clan, and I just had to get away. I went to see Hoseok in the hospital, and I just got so, so angry. I was pissed off and I was all up in my head. Next thing I knew, I was in the car, calling Jimin, in that area and..." 

"And what?" Jungkook asked, "Did they see you? Were you spotted? Did H-" 

"Kook." Jin said, cutting him off, "Let him talk." 

"One of the lower ranks saw me, but I don't think he recognised who I was," Yoongi said.

"Did you get what you wanted?" Jin asked. 

"I don't know what I wanted." He answered.

"Then why did you go? What were you planning on doing there, huh Yoongi?!" Jin scolded, "You were going to go there, alone, in Hwan invested territory and get yourself killed!" 

"I was feeling guilty, okay!" Yoongi shouted, voice booming, echoing off the walls of the gym, "Hoseok in lying there, fighting for his life in the hospital! This would have never happened if I just..." 

"Just what?" Jungkook asked, "Not fallen for him? Is that what you were going to say?" 

"I should have never taken him in," Yoongi said wrecked, voice small and broken. 

"He wouldn't be alive if you didn't and you know that," Jin told him. 

"What kind of life even is this?" Yoongi scoffed, "He's on a goddamn hospital bed, Jin! And it's all because of me." 

"He would kill you for saying that," Jungkook said. 

"Ironic isn't it," Yoongi scoffed.

"What do you want Yoongi?" Jin asked, "What did you go there to accomplish?"

"I don't know." 

"Come on," Jin said. 

"Where are we going?" Yoongi asked.

"To see Hobi." 

"Jin.." Yoongi said, trailing off. 

"No! We're going to see him. Right now." Jin said, sternly. 

Yoongi nodded, reluctantly getting off the bleachers. 

"Kook," Jin said, taking out his car keys, "Take Yoongi to my car." 

"What about you?" He asked, taking the keys from Jin's outstretched hand. 

"I'll catch up." 

Jin waited until he heard the creak of the front door before he turned back to Jimin, eyes slitted, dark and angry. Jimin felt a wave of fear wash through him, intimidated by the taller and older man. 

"W-What?" Jimin asked. 

"What you heard just now," Jin said, stalking towards Jimin, "If you ever repeat it-" 

"Who am I going to repeat it to?" Jimin said, attempting to stand up for himself, "I have all of two friends! One of them just started dating someone so I barely see him, and the other is...well he's my best friend and I mean I know we share a lot but I don't think that-" 

"I didn't ask to hear your life story." Jin said. 

"Do you always cut people off when they're speaking?" Jimin asked. 

"If I find out that you told someone what you heard," Jin said, "Trust me when I say that dying would be the only thing on your mind." 

Jimin gulped.

"Do you understand?" Jin asked.

Jimin nodded, feeling incredibly small in front of Jin's piercing gaze. 

Jin smirked, knowing the power that he held just by his words. He turned around and walked out of the door with a loud creak. 

Jimin let out a breath that he didn't even know he was holding, the fear still running cold in his veins, but feeling more relief now than anything. He slumped down on the bleachers, trying to catch his breath and process what just happened. 

Hwan Clan
Archer
Hoseok in the hospital

Hwan Clan
Archer
Hoseok in the hospital

The list ran like a mantra in his head that he tried to memorise. This along with the fights that he saw were the only things he had for his article at the moment. 

"You're deep in thought." Called a deep voice from in front of him. 

"You scared me." Jimin said, clutching his chest with his hand, jumping from the shock of being pulled out from his thoughts. 

"What were you thinking about?" 

"Your friend Jin is scary," Jimin said. 

"He's harmless," Jungkook said, knowing that was the furthest thing from the truth. 

"Because harmless people definitely threaten death," Jimin said sarcastically. 

"He's protective." 

"He's a man with a gun!" Jimin said, "Why does he have a gun anyway?!" 

"Protection." Was all Jungkook said. 

Jimin just shook his head. Maybe he was in over his head here.... Maybe he should just quit the gym and find another job. That would be the best thing.

But he didn't want to. He really didn't. He liked his job and it was a really really well paying job. He wouldn't be able to find a salary like that anywhere else.

"You're thinking again." Jungkook said, sitting down next to Jimin on the bleachers. 

"You should try it sometime," Jimin teased, shooting him a small smile that didn't extend all the way to his eyes. 

"Can I ask you something?" 

"Never thought you were the kind to ask permission for anything, but sure, go ahead." Jimin said. 

"You really didn't know who Jin was?" 

"No! I didn't! And I still barely do!" Jimin said, "Why are you so obsessed with whether or not I know his identity."

"You didn't know who he was, and you barely know who I am, and yet you jumped in front of a gun for me." Jungkook said. 

"I wasn't going to let you get hurt," Jimin said. 

"And you were fine with getting hurt yourself?" Jungkook said. 

"It's not ideal, but the less casualties the better, right?" Jimin said. 

"Why did you do it?" Jungkook asked, voice softer now, "Why did you get in front of that gun?"

"It's like Yoongi said, we're a family now," Jimin told him, "And families look out for one another." 

Jungkook kept staring at Jimin's lips, wanting nothing more than to feel him on his skin, to tangle his fingers in his hair, to hear him scream and moan and writhe under his touch. But this was serious. What he was about to say was serious. 

As selfish as it was, he wanted to feel Jimin, just one last time before he told him. Because once he said those words, he was sure than the pink haired boy would run as fast and as far as his little legs would take him. 

"Jimin," Jungkook said. 

"Yeah?" 

"I know that Yoongi and I were supposed to tell you this together, but after what happened today, I don't think waiting is necessary." Jungkook told him. 

"What? What is it? What's going on?" Jimin asked. 

"Listen," Jungkook said, turning his body to face the smaller boy, leaning back against the wood of the bleachers, "You're not allowed to tell anyone what I'm about to tell you. Not for me, or for the sensitivity of the information; but for your own safety. If anyone, and I mean anyone hears that you didn't keep this secret, you would be in trouble. And if that happens, not even I can save you." 

"Jungkook, you're scaring me," Jimin said, softly.

"Jimin," Jungkook started, "Have you heard about the Kim clan?" 

"You mean the gang?" He asked. 

"Yeah. Them." Jungkook said. 

"Wh-What about them?" Jimin asked, stuttering over his words, his imagination taking over. 

"Jin's full name is Kim Seokjin." Jungkook said, "And he heads the gang."

"O-Oh." 

Jungkook gave him a minute, to let the information sink in. 

"And you and Yoongi..." Jimin said, trailing off, waiting for Jungkook to complete the sentence. 

"We're Jin's closest friends, and have been even before he was in the Kim clan," Jungkook explained. 

"Are you guys a part of the gang too?" 

"It's complicated," Jungkook said, "I'll let Yoongi fill you in on those details." 

"Why are you telling me this?" Jimin asked. 

"Because." Jungkook said, not knowing what to say. 

"Because what?" 

"Because you jumped in front of a gun for me," Jungkook told him.

"What does that have to do with anything?" 

"This is your out, Jimin." Jungkook said, "I'm giving you an out. This gym houses more gang members than you think. It's like a safe house almost. And with Jin, Yoongi, Hoseok and I being incredibly close, you're going to see them here a lot. So, if even after knowing that we're members of a dangerous gang, who carries around guns like it's nothing, you still want to be here..." 

"Do-Do they know you're telling me this?" Jimin asked after a beat of silence. 

"No." Jungkook said, "We have talked about telling you, but they wanted to wait."

"But you didn't wait," Jimin pointed out.

"I didn't." Jungkook said with a shake of his head.

"What's going to happen to you if they find out you told me?" Jimin asked, "They won't hurt you will they?" 

Jungkook cracked a smile. "I just told you that I'm a member of a gang, and you're still worried about my safety?"

"You didn't answer my question," Jimin said. 

"They won't hurt me," Jungkook reassured him, "They will never hurt me. They are the only people in the world that I can say that about 100 percent."

"Can I ask you something?" Jimin said, more than he asked. 

"Anything." 

"Those fights..." 

"What about them?" Jungkook asked him. 

"Are they gang related?" Jimin asked, "Is that why you fight?" 

"No. They aren't gang related," Jungkook said, "Think of it as an audition. Like an underground X Factor. Some people come to show off their skills, some come to destress, others come to just watch people get hit, and some come to get high." 

"Were you recruited into the gang that way?" 

"No." Jungkook said with a shake of his head, "I joined just a couple of years back. Not far from when Yoongi and Jin joined." 

Jimin was trying to take all of this information in, updating the little list in his head. He went from not having anything to write about to suddenly having pages and pages of information. 

As much as he wanted to extract all of the information from Jungkook now, he knew he couldn't get greedy. He still needed to tread lightly. 

"Can I ask you something a little more personal?" Jimin asked him. 

Jungkook nodded, hesitantly.

"Who's Hoseok?" Jimin asked, "Is he okay? Why is he in the hospital? What happened?" 

"I don't know how much I can tell you exactly," Jungkook said, "But for now, you're on a need to know basis." 

"Can I know that?" 

"I don't know," Jungkook said, "But if it's any consolation, he is getting better. They're just waiting for him to wake up." 

"Can I ask you something else?" 

"What is it?" Jungkook said. 

"Why are you telling me all of this?" Jimin asked. 

"Didn't we just go through this?" Jungkook said. 

"Yeah, but I feel like there's something more you aren't telling me." 

"I don't know why I'm telling you this," Jungkook said, honestly, "Something about you makes me want to protect you." 

"Even though I was the one protecting you just now?" Jimin joked, giggling. 

"Even then," Jungkook said, unable to not smile at that infectious giggle. 

"Now what?" Jimin asked. 

"What?" 

"What do you want me to do with this information?" Jimin asked him. 

"Think about whether or not you want to still be in this gym." Jungkook said, "If you don't, I can always get you another trainer. One that isn't part of a gang."

"Does this mean I'm off work now?" Jimin said, wanting to go back and write all of this down. 

"I'll give you a half day," Jungkook joked. 

"See you tomorrow then," Jimin said, standing up.

"Tomorrow." 

 

~~~

 

Yoongi was staring out the window, too into his thoughts and his own head while Jin was weaving in and out of traffic, taking the shortest route possible to get to Hoseok. 

"Yoongi." Jin called out.

"Hmm?" He answered, eyes fixated on the side view mirror. 

"This Jimin guy," Jin started, "How exactly do you know him?" 

"He came to the gym and wanted self defence lessons," Yoongi said, "Wanted to learn how to defend himself and stop feeling weak." 

"And you trust him?" 

"Enough to let him join the gym and bring him to fights," Yoongi said. 

"Have you done a background check?" Jin asked. 

"Aren't you being a little too cautious right now?" Yoongi asked, looking at Jin. 

"Aren't you being too lax?" Jin countered. 

"Look at him, Jin! The guy is tiny! He has pink hair for god's sake!" 

"It could just be a ruse," Jin pointed out, "We've been fooled before." 

"That guy can barely hurt a fly," Yoongi said. 

"He's taking boxing lessons from you!" 

"Jin," Yoongi called out, "I may not know a lot about Jimin but my gut is telling me that he's a good person." 

"I just don't want anyone to get hurt." Was all Jin said. 

"Well, you've met him," Yoongi said, "What do you think?"

"He jumped in front of my gun when Jungkook came in." 

"That's a lot to unpack in one sentence," Yoongi said. 

"I came into the gym looking for you and I saw him there. We had a little...disagreement of sorts, and I may, or may not have, pulled out my gun," Jin said with a cough, "And then Jungkook walked in. He yelled at Jungkook to leave and when I turned around, Jimin practically flung himself in front of the gun."

"Tell me again how you think this boy is untrustworthy?" Yoongi smirked.

"Nobody can be that innocent, Yoongi!" Jin said. 

"Not everyone is out to get us, Jin," Yoongi said, defending Jimin, "He seems like a good kid." 

"Good enough for Jungkook to want to stay back, obviously," Jin muttered under his breath. 

"He likes him." 

"Jungkook?" Jin asked, "That's...unheard of." 

"I'm telling you, Jin, there's something about Jimin..." Yoongi said, shaking his head, "It's like he's a magnet." 

"Magnet for trouble?" 

"I don't think so," Yoongi said. 

"Speaking of trouble," Jin said.

"That was a terrible segue even for you," Yoongi muttered. 

Ignoring his comment, Jin continued, "You know that what you did today was incredibly stupid, right?" 

"I know." 

"I mean putting yourself in danger like that..." Jin said, disappointed, "Yoongi what were you thinking?" 

"I wasn't thinking!" 

"Clearly," Jin scoffed. 

"Look, it won't happen again." 

"It better not," Jin warned, "What's going to happen to Jungkook if you got hurt, huh? Did you ever think about that?! You know how much you mean to him!" 

Yoongi sighed, leaning back against the seat, guilt ridden, "I know." 

"It's not just you anymore Yoongi. You have all of us." Jin said, "Me, Hobi, Jungkook...We said that it would always be us. You can't go back on that. Not now. Not ever." 

"There was just a lot going on," He said as though that was a valid enough justification. 

"Then talk about it! Talk to me! Talk to Kook! Talk to anyone, Yoongi! But god, don't be an idiot and go looking for danger as though that would solve everything!" 

"You do realise we're in a gang right," Yoongi said with a smile, "Danger is kind of our M.O." 

"Stop." Jin said, trying to hold back a smile, "Don't make me laugh while I'm trying to be mad at you." 

"I get it, Jin," Yoongi said, "I did something stupid. But it's over now and I can't change the past-" 

"Exactly!" Jin said, "You can't change the past, so why keep mulling over it? You keep thinking about all these 'what if' scenarios as though that would make Hoseok suddenly be alright again. But it won't, Overthinking and putting the blame on yourself isn't going to help anyone - Not you, and definitely not Hoseok." 

Yoongi sighed, "You're right." 

"Man, I am so good," Jin muttered, praising himself, "I should really think about hosting a Ted Talk. What do you think?"

"I think that not even a single ticket would get sold." 

"I could make it happen," Jin said, "I have the power you know." 

"You want to give a Ted Talk with an audience full of gang members?" 

"Think I could set them straight?" Jin asked with a smile. 

"You're not straight yourself, how the hell do you expect other people to be," Yoongi said, laughing. 

"I'm definitely not straight," Jin said, with an almost dreamy smile on his face. 

"How is that going, by the way?" Yoongi asked. 

"Good. Really good." Jin said, "I told him about the underground fights. I mean, it took two days for him to call me back, but when he did and we met up, it was like...We just sat there at the coffee shop and we talked for hours, and hours, and hours, until the owner had to chase us out. And even after that, we just walked around and kept talking." 

"So, it's official?" 

"I guess it is," He replied with a smile. 

"And what about the gang? Are you going to tell him about that?" 

"I'm going to take Jungkook's advice on the matter and-" 

"Wait! Jungkook gave you advice?" Yoongi said, pleasantly surprised. 

"I know, right," Jin said, "But the kid's wise. Like, weirdly wise." 

"He did learn from the best," Yoongi bragged. 

Jin playfully rolled his eyes, "I'm taking his advice and easing Namjoon into the whole gang world." 

Yoongi nodded, "I think it'll work. I mean, you did tell him about the underground boxing thing and he seemed to take it really well." 

"He's innocent though, Yoongs. Very, very innocent." Jin sighed, "I just don't want to taint that." 

"If he loves you enough, he won't let go," Yoongi said. 

"Self preservation is more powerful than anything else in the world. It's the first law of nature." Jin recited. 

"That doesn't apply to every single situation, Jin," Yoongi said, "Don't make Namjoon's decision for him. Let him make the decision when the time comes. Don't ruin something that hasn't even started yet."

"You're right," Jin sighed, "I just need to give this time. I need to give us time." 

"I'm usually right about a lot of things," Yoongi said, cockily. 

"You literally just did something stupid not even 5 minutes ago." 

"I said a lot of things! Not every thing!" 

Jin shook his head fondly, putting the car in park. 

"Ready?" He asked Yoongi. 

Yoongi simply nodded, unbuckling his seatbelt, hand reaching for the door handle when he suddenly paused. 

"What's wrong?" Jin asked, sensing his hesitation. 

"He's going to be okay, right?" Yoongi asked, "He'll wake up, right?" 

"The doctors said that it would take some time," Jin said. 

"I know." 

"Are you asking if he'll be okay, or if he'll blame you?" 

"Both? Neither? I don't know." Yoongi said quickly.

"He loves you." 

"You don't know that." Yoongi said. 

"But you do." Jin said, "Trust in yourself. Trust in him." 

"Okay," Yoongi said, letting out a breath, trying to calm himself down, "Let's go." 

Wordlessly, they walked through the halls of the hospital, the route to Hoseok's room an all too familiar one. Yoongi tried not to overthink every single action as he pressed the button for the elevator, waiting there, every second seeming like an hour. He stepped into the elevator with Jin trailing behind him, following Yoongi's footsteps, each thud letting him know that he wasn't alone. Yoongi was incredibly grateful for that, but still couldn't get the nagging feeling that something was about to happen. 

"Jin." Yoongi said, watching the floor numbers of the elevator. 

"What?" 

"You know that feeling in your stomach when something is about to happen," Yoongi said, trying his best to explain. 

"Yeah?" 

"I'm feeling it right now." Yoongi said, the ding of the elevator interrupting their conversation. 

"You sure it's not just gas?" 

"No, that's a lower pain," Yoongi said. 

"I'm sure it's nothing." Jin tried to reassure, stepping out of the elevator, making their way to Hoseok's room. 

"Are you the guardian for Jung Hoseok?" The nurse asked as soon as they crossed the station, making them stop in their tracks. 

"Yes," Yoongi said, quickly, "Is everything okay? Is he okay? Why didn't anyone call-" 

"You must be Yoongi." The nurse said with a smile. 

"I am?' He said. 

"Mr. Jung is awake," She said, "He's been asking for you." 

 

~~~~

 

Jimin had his laptop on the bed, sitting in front of it cross legged with his glasses perched on top of his nose as he typed everything he heard today from memory furiously onto the opened word document. For now, he didn't care about spelling or grammar mistakes. He just had to get everything down before he forgot it. 

He repeated the list he made in the gym, out loud, slowly, like chanting a mantra. 

Hwan Clan
Archer
Hoseok in hospital
Underground fights
Kim Seokjin 
Kim clan

He typed and typed until his fingers were cramping up. He looked over his notes, deeming it a good enough start for his article. He was sure that he would get his job back if he kept at it with this pace. All he had to do was delve in deeper. As of right now, he had gained Jungkook's trust which was a good first point. 

"Busy?" Taehyung asked, walking into his room. 

"When did you get here?" Jimin asked, not even surprised anymore. This was a common occurrence in his house.

"I knocked but you didn't answer," Taehyung said, plopping himself down next to Jimin, looking over the document. 

"I gave you the spare key for emergencies only," Jimin said, eyes scanning over the document himself. 

"You could have been dead and I wouldn't know until I came in using the spare key," Taehyung told him, and then gestured at the opened document in front of them "What's this?"

"Learnt some new information today," Jimin said, "Needed to write it down before I forgot." 

"Hwan clan?" Archer? Kim clan?" Taehyung read, "What are all of these?" 

"I'm not supposed to say," Jimin told him. 

"When did that ever stop you?" Taehyung scoffed. 

"True," Jimin sighed, "It's some dark shit, though." 

"Hit me." Taehyung said, leaning back against the mountain of pillows resting on the headboard, head turned to face Jimin. 

"Do you know the Kim clan? The gang that's always in the news?" Jimin asked. 

"Yeah," Taehyung answered. 

"I met with the leader today," Jimin said, "His name is Kim Seokjin." 

"No way!" Taehyung said, mouth falling open. 

"He pointed a gun at me and everything!" Jimin said. 

"What?! What did you do?! What happened?!" 

"Long story short, there's some thing happening between the two gangs that I'm not entire sure of, but I think that the other gang put one of Jin's members into the hospital. Yoongi was torn up about it or something and asked me to open the gym today. When I went in, Jin was looking for Yoongi but I wouldn't tell him anything and then he pulled out a gun," Jimin explained, "Jungkook came in and I tried to make him go away but it turns out that they all know each other. Everything happened really fast actually. Next thing I know, Jin is threatening me and then Jungkook comes over and explains that they are in all in a gang." 

"And that's what you missed on, Glee," Taehyung said. 

"Crazy, right?" Jimin said with an almost breathless laugh. 

"They should make a movie out of your life." 

"It would be amazing." Jimin agreed. 

"Who do you think would play me?" 

"Scarlett Johansson." Jimin said with a straight face.

They laughed, Taehyung shoving Jimin's shoulder as giggles and chuckles tumbled out of their mouths.

"Oh by the way," Taehyung said, "I invited Namjoon." 

"Will he actually show up this time?" 

"He better! I threatened him with our friendship so there's no way he won't come." Taehyung said. 

"I haven't seen him in forever!" 

"I know! Ever since he got that new boy toy it's like we don't exist." 

"Don't be bitter just because you're single," Jimin teased. 

"Speaking of single," Taehyung said, "What's going on between you and Dwayne The Rock Johnson?"

"You mean Jungkook?" Jimin asked. 

"Yeah, him." 

"He actually gave me an out," Jimin said, "He told me that he understands if I never want to come back to the gym. He would even set me up with a new trainer and everything."

"That's...kind of sweet," Taehyung said. 

"He's a nice guy." 

"Didn't seem like it when he almost killed that guy in the ring," Taehyung told him. 

"What do you expect from underground fights?!"

"Not to mention that he's part of a gang," Taehyung said, cocking an eyebrow. 

"Yeah, I don't have an excuse for that..." Jimin said, trailing off, head falling back into the pillows.

Just then, the doorbell rang which was followed by a knock. 

"Get the door," Jimin said, closing his laptop and shoving it on the bed. 

"It's your house! You get it!" Taehyung complained, not getting off the bed. 

"Ugh fine!" Jimin said, turning back to Taehyung before he walked out of the room, "Not a word to Joon, okay?" 

"My lips are sealed." Taehyung said, sitting up. 

Jimin opened the front door, greeting Namjoon with a hug before closing it behind him. 

"Well, well, well," Taehyung said, coming out of the bedroom, "If it isn't Mr. I'm-Too-Good-For-His-Friends-Now-That-I-Have-A-Boyfriend, Kim Namjoon himself." 

"Hi, Tae," Namjoon said with a dimpled grin. 

"Don't 'Hi Tae' me! Where have you been? We haven't seen or heard from you in ages!" Taehyung said, sitting down on the couch opposite Namjoon. 

"It's been a crazy week," Namjoon admitted. 

"With the boyfriend, I'm assuming?" Taehyung said. 

"Kind of," Namjoon giggled. 

"Giggles?! Namjoon is giggling!" Jimin teased. 

"Who is the man that is making our sweet baby Namjoon giggle?" Taehyung teased. 

"He's a really nice guy! I'm sure you guys would love him!" Namjoon said, "He was there at the first fight we went to together, actually!" 

"Really?" Jimin asked, "What's his name?" 

"Jin." Namjoon answered. 

Jimin's breath hitched in his throat, panic running through his veins. There was no way that this was the same Jin that he knew. There was millions of Jin's in the world. This was just a coincidence. 

"Oh?" Taehyung asked, trying not to look too shocked, "Do you have a picture?" 

"Yeah," Namjoon said, taking out his phone, "You know, we spent the whole day together yesterday! It was amazing!" 

While Namjoon was talking and looking through his phone, both Jimin and Taehyung exchanged glances, the same panic mirrored in each other's eyes. 

"Have you ever met someone and like, the second you start talking, it's like you make this instant connection with them? Hours feel like minutes and minutes feel like seconds and it's like you just can't get enough of them! The conversation never gets boring and you're so in sync with one another," Namjoon rambled, "Have you ever felt that?" 

"Show us a picture, Joon! I want to see who this guy is that's making you all sappy!" Jimin said. 

Namjoon held out his phone. And on it was a picture of Namjoon and Jin, smiling at the camera. Jin was pouting while Namjoon was smiling so widely, his dimples were deeper than Jimin had ever seen. 

It was the same Jin. 

"Namjoon.." Jimin said, trailing off, not knowing what to say. 

"What?" Namjoon asked. 

"What exactly do you know about him?" Jimin asked, slowly. 

Namjoon paled. 

"What do you know?" Namjoon asked, phone shaking slightly in his hand. 

Jimin wanted to tell Namjoon everything! He wanted to tell him about the gym, and Yoongi, and Jin being the leader of the Kim clan. But he also remembered what Jin told him in the gym. If Jimin were to tell anyone...What would happen to him? His job? More importantly, what would happen to Namjoon?! 

But if Jimin didn't say anything, he would be dragging Namjoon deeper and deeper into the web that was already weaving itself.... 

How did everything become so messy? Jimin didn't know what to do, or say... 

"Jimin." Namjoon said, "What do you know?"

Chapter Text

Yoongi pushed past all of the nurses, leaving Jin behind as he practically ran in the hallway to get to Hoseok's room. He knew this corridor all too well, recognised the faces that were visiting, recognised the stark smell of bleach and disinfectant that coated the walls and the floors, recognised the people lying on the bed. He knew it so well, that he even knew what each person in there was suffering from. 

With his heart beating faster and faster with each step, and mind going over every prayer he had learnt when he was younger despite not believing in a God, he pushed the door open. A part of him thought that the nurse was just playing a sick joke, and he expected to walk in with Hoseok still unconscious, tubes jutting out of his arms, connected to machines and IV Drips. But he didn't. Instead he walked in on him smiling. Laughing. Yoongi felt a huge breath of relief leave him, a weight disappearing from his shoulders. 

"All good, Mr. Jung. Just make sure not to fiddle or move too much with the line in your arms. But other than that, you should be fine!" The nurse said, putting in another IV Drip and hanging it on the pole next to the bed, "I'll be back in a few to take you for the CT and MRI Scans." 

"Thank you Nicole," Hoseok said with a bright smile, "But I told you, you can just call me Hoseok! Everyone does anyway." 

The nurse laughed, clutching the board with the doctors notes closer to her chest as she bid him farewell, smiling politely at Yoongi who was standing at the door. 

"Yoongi," Hoseok said, smiling growing brighter, lips slightly chapped. 

"Hobi." Yoongi replied, tears pricking his eyes. It was him. He was alive. He's smiling. He's happy. Hobi is back. His Hobi. 

A million thoughts were running through his head, all of them about Hoseok. 

"Are you just going to stand there forever or are you going to come say hi?" Hoseok teased, cocking his head. 

Yoongi took a step into the room, but stopped. 

"What is it?" Hoseok asked. 

"I-I don't want to hurt you," Yoongi admitted in a small voice. 

"Hurt me? How are you going to hurt me?" 

"The...The drips and the lines and the-" Yoongi said quickly, "I'll just stay here." 

"Don't be silly!" Hoseok said, "Come here." 

"Hoseok..." Yoongi said, trailing off, unsure of himself. 

It was different when he was asleep. Yoongi was by his bedside every single day. He would hold his hand gently, rubbing circles with him thumb and talk to him as if Hoseok could hear him. But now that he was awake, Yoongi didn't want to make a wrong move. He didn't want to hurt him. He didn't want to cause him more pain than he already had. 

"Yoongi," Hoseok said, gently, "Please? I've missed you." 

How could he say no? 

Yoongi walked to sit on the chair beside his bed. 

"You know, you weren't even this nervous on our first date," Hoseok said, teasing him. 

"You didn't have IV Drips sticking out of you on our first date," Yoongi replied. 

"No, it definitely wasn't part of my outfit..." Hoseok said, "But I could've pulled it off." 

"You could wear a trash bag and still look cute," Yoongi said, heart clenching. He had missed this. He missed him. 

"Were you always this cheesy, or is it just the drugs thats making it seem this way?" Hoseok said, the grin never leaving his way. 

"Appreciate it while it lasts." A voice quipped from the door.

"Jin!" Hoseok called out with a bright smile. 

"Hey, Hobi," Jin greeted, "How're you feeling?" 

"Like I just got stabbed!" Hoseok said, trying to joke. 

Jin winced, guilt washing over him. 

"Too soon?" Hoseok asked, reading the tension in the room, "Yeah, I think it was way too soon." 

"Hoseok, I-" Jin said, clearing his throat, breath coming out shakily, "I'm sorry." 

"Sorry? What for?" Hoseok asked, confusion written on his face. 

"I didn't pro-" 

"Wait." Hoseok said, cutting him off, "You can't seriously be blaming yourself for someone else stabbing me?! I swear to god, if that is what you're apologising for..." 

Jin sighed, guilt and despair consuming him all at once, "I should have been there with you Seok. I should have been there to protect you and I wasn't!" 

"Shut up, Jin!" Hoseok said, "Stop blaming yourself! I don't blame you at all! That thought never once crossed my mind." 

 

"But Hobi-"

"Stop." Hoseok said, smile falling as he stared at Jin, as if warning him, "Enough, Jin. Stop feeling guilty for something that isn't your fault. I knew what I was getting into when I joined your gang, and I definitely knew what I was getting into when I agreed to be your right hand man. So, stop." 

Jin nodded, moving from in front of the door to Hoseok's bedside, beside Yoongi. 

"So," Hoseok said, smile returning to his face, "What did I miss?" 

"Nothing." Yoongi said. 

"Yoongi adopted another stray," Jin said, leaning back against the plastic chair. 

"Another?" Hoseok said, surprised, "I thought you would have ended with me." 

"He's cute. You'd like him," Yoongi said, "He has pink, cotton candy hair, not to mention he gives Jungkook a run for his money." 

"That's a first," Hoseok commented, "What's his name?" 

"Jimin. Park Jimin." Jin answered. 

"Oh, you don't like him," Hoseok said immediately. 

"I don't know him." 

"I don't get why you don't trust him. Look at him, Jin! He'd apologise for accidentally hurting a fly!" Yoongi said. 

"Why did you adopt him then?" Hoseok asked, looking at Yoongi.

"He wanted to learn self defence and just recently lost a job..." 

"You're too soft," Jin said with a roll of his eyes. 

"Says the one who grins like a dork just by hearing the name of his boyfriend!" Yoongi quipped. 

"Boyfriend?!" Hoseok asked, surprised, "Damn! Remind me never to get stabbed again! I missed so much!" 

"Get stabbed again and I'm going to kill you," Yoongi said. 

"You won't even hold my hand! How do you expect to kill me?!" 

Yoongi rolled his eyes, but gently took Hoseok's cold hand in his, rubbing circles on the back of it. He couldn't help the smile that grew on his face as he felt Hoseok's hand warm up in his.

"Speaking of kill," Jin said, clearing his throat, "Hoseok, do you remember anything from that night?" 

"I don't remember much..." Hoseok said, trying to think back, "I remember that I was nearing the club to collect money and the next thing I know I was being ambushed. I was dragged to some alley and then-" 

"Hobi, you don't have to..." Yoongi said, squeezing his hand lightly.

"I'm okay," He reassured with a smile, turning back to Jin, "I tried to fight back and the next thing I knew, I was on the ground with blood gushing out of me and the knife next to my body." 

"Do you remember who it was?" Jin asked him. 

"I don't know who he is, but I think if I saw him, I could identify him," Hoseok said, unsure himself. 

"Was it this guy?" Jin asked, holding his phone out to Hoseok with a picture of Archer on it. 

"No." Hoseok said, shaking his head. 

"Hobi, are you sure?" Jin asked, more serious now, "Look again. Look closely."

"He was there, but he wasn't the one who stabbed me," Hoseok said. 

"Hoseok-" 

"Jin enough!" Yoongi said, almost pleading, "He just woke up. Give him some space." 

"You're right," Jin said, backing away, "You're right. I'm sorry." 

"No, it's fine, really," Hoseok said, "I'm happy to help." 

"You've done enough, Hoseok," Jin said with a smile, "I'm going to go call Jungkook and tell him you're awake. You rest up, okay?" 

"See you." Hoseok said, waving at Jin who was already retreating. 

The door closed and Hoseok and Yoongi looked at each other, adoration in their eyes. 

"Hi." Hoseok said. 

"Hey," Yoongi replied, squeezing his hand gently.

"I've missed you." 

"Me too, Seok." Yoongi replied, smile growing larger, "Me too." 

"Does this stab wound mean I get to be spoiled now when I come home?"

 

~~~

 

 

His black singlet was practically glued to his back from sweat, heavy pants echoing around the room, bouncing off the walls of the dimly lit empty gym. He swung his right hand, then his left, then his right; each punch getting more and more powerful as his fists connected with the canvas punching bag, making indents in its sand, tears starting to show from the sheer use of it. He couldn't help it. His mind was plagued with thoughts of a certain pink haired boy, and he couldn't understand why. From the moment the boxer made eye contact with him on that first day, it was like he had forgotten about anyone and everyone else. When his lips connected with another, all he imagined was Jimin. When someone else was on their knees for him, all he imagined was Jimin and his plump, pink lips over his cock. 

Jimin. Jimin. Jimin. 

That was the only thing going through his mind, and he was sick of it! 

With one last punch, putting all of his weight behind his fist, he stopped. His chest was heaving, breathing laboured, and eyes still full of fire. 

He walked over to the bleachers, grabbing the water bottle on the stand and took large gulps out of it as he plopped himself down on the cold wood. 

Jungkook still couldn't come to terms with the fact that he had practically told Jimin everything. He didn't know why he did it, neither did he know if it was the correct decision or not. But something about Jimin made him not want to hide. He didn't want to be dishonest. But most of all, when he saw Jimin standing in front of a gun, even if it was Jin's....Something inside of him broke. The mere idea of the pink haired boy getting hurt was like a punch to the gut that Jungkook could never recover from. Seeing Jimin jump in front of the gun just for him...Well, that was a whole other feeling that Jungkook couldn't even explore. 

There was a warmth every time he saw the shorter boy smile. A warmth that spread from his chest all over. The way his eyes crinkled when he did, or turned into crescents when he laughed, throwing himself at anything and anyone that was close enough. The way that his eyes grew wider and wider with every new bruise that Jungkook got, or how his lips felt over Jungkook's jaw, gentle and soft, as if scared of hurting him. 

Shit. 

Jungkook was in too deep. 

He barely even knew the boy! How is it that Jimin had so much power over him already. 

Jungkook wasn't meant for this life. He wasn't meant for love! He wasn't meant to be soft! He wasn't meant to be vulnerable! This was unchartered territory....

The blaring of Jungkook's phone broke him out of his reverie, bringing him back to earth. He reached into his duffel bag in front of him, digging around until he found it. 

"Jin?" He answered, looking at the contact name. 

"Kook." 

"What's up?" Jungkook asked. 

"Hobi. He's awake." Jin said, getting straight to the point. 

"What?!" Jungkook said, practically leaping out of seat, "Is he okay? Is Yoongi okay? Can I come? Should I come?! You know what, I'm coming-" 

"Don't." Jin told him, cutting him off. 

"What? Why? Did something happen?" 

"Kook, Archer didn't stab Hobi." 

"Then who did?!" He asked. 

"I don't know, but I need more information." Jin said, shaking his head, "I think it's the lead that I got." 

"Want me to follow up?" Jungkook asked. 

"It's risky." 

"I can handle it." He assured the older boy. 

"Fine. I'll send you the information," Jin told him. 

"I'll get right on it." 

"Jungkook." Jin said, before the younger boy could hang up. 

"What?" 

"Keep this between us for now, yeah?" Jin said. 

"As in..." 

"Don't tell Yoongi." 

"I won't lie to him," Jungkook warned, "You know that." 

"I know," Jin said, "I didn't say lie. I just said not to tell him."

"If he asks-" 

"We'll deal with that when we cross that bridge." Jin told him, "But for now..." 

"Send me the info." Jungkook said and hung up, running his fingers through his hair. 

This would be a good distraction. This would make sure he wasn't thinking. 

 

~~~

 

"You didn't tell him." Taehyung said, as soon as Jimin closed the door. 

"I didn't." He replied, straight faced. 

"You should have." Taehyung told him, disappointed. 

"You haven't met Jin," Jimin said, as if that was a valid excuse. 

"How does that matter right now, Jimin?!" Taehyung said, almost yelling, "Our best friend is dating someone who leads the goddamn mafia!" 

"I know." 

"Do you?! Because if you did I'm pretty sure that you would have told him!" Taehyung said, yelling.

"I know, Tae, okay?!" Jimin yelled back, "Don't you think I wanted to tell him?! God, I was going to-" 

"Going to and actually telling him are two different things!" 

"You knew and you didn't tell him either so don't just put the blame on me!" Jimin yelled, stepping closer to Taehyung. 

"I didn't tell him because I thought that you would! This is something you found out!" 

"Those sound like great excuses, Taehyung!" 

"What's your excuse then, huh, Jimin?!" Taehyung spat. 

"I need to find out more information before telling Namjoon anything," Jimin said, "For all we know, he knows something that we don't." 

"Your job! Really?!" Taehyung spat, "You're worried about your job, right now?!" 

"Calm down, Tae," Jimin said, "This isn't just about a job! This is about all of us! Those people are dangerous-"

"Exactly why we should have told him, Jimin! He could be in danger!" 

"I'm putting you in danger by even letting you know who Jin is!" Jimin told him, "Look, Taehyung, think about it calmly okay. I know you're worried about Joon, as am I. But Jin is potentially dangerous. He threatened me over a conversation in which I had absolutely no context of! Can you imagine what he would do if he found out that Namjoon, you and I all know about him and his gang?" 

"So what?" Taehyung said, "You're just going to keep him in the dark?" 

"For now." Jimin said, "Let me just find out more, okay? I'm already in, I just need a little more..." 

"You've been with these guys for barely a week and already they're more important your actual friends." Taehyung scoffed. 

"Tae you know it's not-" 

"I hope they're worth it, Jimin." Taehyung said, grabbing his coat and walking to the door, "I hope they're worth losing your actual friends over." 

And with that, Taehyung slammed the front door shut, leaving Jimin behind, alone. 

 

~~~

 

Jimin was up early. Yoongi had asked him to open the gym again, telling him that he had somewhere else to be and that Jimin could practice alone if he wanted, or wait till Jungkook came back. 

When he reached the gym, the door was already opened. Jimin felt a wave of cold fear rush through him. Things were different after he found out that the gym was basically a gang safehouse. What if there were more people here with guns? What then?

"H-Hello?" Jimin called out to the dark gym, as he walked through the creaking door, taking small and calculated steps, "W-Who's there?" 

No response. 

He walked closer to the wall, turning on the light and hoping that the brightness would wash away some of his fear. But it didn't help. 

"I-I have a weapon!" He called out, not having anything in his hand but a gym bag and a phone. 

He walked through the gym, passing the ring and noticed that Yoongi's office door was opened. He looked around, hoping to find something that he could use as a weapon, if it came to that. He wasn't confident about his boxing skills just yet, even though he had improved on his jabs. He was sure that whoever this was, probably had more experience than he had. 

"H-Hello?" Jimin stuttered out, grabbing the lightest dumbbell off the rack with a clang and walking towards the office slowly. 

He pushed the door open, ready to hit whoever it was that was behind it with the dumbbell, but a hand stopped him, grabbing his wrist in its grasp and holding it tightly. Jimin gasped as the dumbbell was snatched out of his hand and placed on the table beside the door. 

"Next time you want to catch someone, don't announce your every move." 

"What are you doing here?" Jimin asked. 

"The better question would be, why the hell are you so bad at sneaking around?" 

"It's not a skill that's taught in school," Jimin said, rolling his eyes, wrist still in his grasp. 

"You should be more careful," Jungkook told him. 

"And you should have told me that it was you instead of scaring me like that!" Jimin countered. 

"I wanted to see what you would have done," Jungkook said, "And you were terrible at whatever it is you would call that." 

"What did you expect me to do?!" Jimin scoffed. 

Jungkook looked at him, tilting his head slightly, "What's wrong with you?"

"Excuse me?" Jimin said, scoffing, snatching his wrist out of Jungkook's grasp.

"I didn't mean it like that," Jungkook said, rolling his eyes, "I meant...that something is off with you. You're not your normal self." 

"I have a normal self now?" 

Jungkook wanted to nod and tell him that his normal self was smiley. Jimin would come in this dark place and brighten everything up immediately. The pink haired boy, as much as Jungkook didn't want to admit, was a welcomed presence in the gym. The gym didn't feel so dull anymore....He didn't feel so dull anymore. There was always this emptiness in the gym that Jungkook could never explain, but with Jimin here, the feeling completely disappeared. 

But instead, Jungkook said, "Don't we all?"

Jimin sighed and leaned against the doorframe, not stepping into Yoongi's office. 

"You can come in, you know," Jungkook told him, leaning back against the leather chair in front of the computer that was perched on the desk. 

"I can't," Jimin said, shaking his head, "Yoongi said that his office was out of bounds." 

Jungkook couldn't help the smile that grew on his face, "You were one of those kids that always followed the rules in school, weren't you?" 

"And you were the one breaking them." 

"Where's the fun in colouring within the lines," Jungkook said. 

"If you colour outside the lines, the picture never gets completed." 

"If you stay within the lines, your picture is just the same as everyone else's," Jungkook said. 

"You're wiser than you look," Jimin commented. 

"Which is why I'm the perfect person to tell your problem's to," Jungkook said, "What's bothering you?" 

"It's stupid," Jimin said, brushing it off. 

"If it was stupid, it wouldn't be bothering you," Jungkook said, "Clearly it's important." 

"You don't want to hear about it anyway." 

"If I didn't, I wouldn't have asked." 

Jimin let out a sigh, knowing that he wasn't going to let up about it until Jimin opened up. What's the worse that could happen anyway? 

"I fought with my best friend last night, that's all," Jimin said, "I thought that we would be okay by now. We usually text each other good morning, and like check up with each other during the day, but he left me on read...." 

"Is this the best friend you brought with you to the match the other day?" 

"You remembered," Jimin said, surprised, "I didn't even introduce you two." 

"Oh, I uhh, yeah.." Jungkook stuttered, clearing his throat, "You mentioned him a couple of times, that's all." 

"Yeah, it's him," Jimin said. 

"What was the fight about?" 

Jimin froze. He couldn't tell Jungkook that the fight was about Namjoon, who was his gang leader's boyfriend and how Jimin told Taehyung about their entire conversation the previous day. 

"Just about this friend and a secret." Jimin said, keeping it as vague as possible. 

"What about it?" 

"Both me and him know a secret about this mutual friend of ours. And it's something that could...change everything." Jimin said, trying to find the right words, "I didn't tell this friend the secret, but neither did he and then he got mad at me about it." 

"Why are you keeping this secret from your friend in the first place?" Jungkook asked. 

"Because knowing information puts people in danger." Was all Jimin said. 

"So does keeping secrets." 

"Oh yeah?" Jimin challenged, crossing his arms in front of his chest, "And you believe that? Wholeheartedly?" 

"I do." Jungkook confirmed with a nod.

"Okay then," Jimin said, "When you told me about the gang yesterday, you said that I was on a need to know basis. Why would you keep the rest of the information away from me if me knowing it wasn't dangerous?" 

"Point taken." Jungkook said, surprised by Jimin's thinking. 

"Exactly." 

"So, what are you going to do, then?" Jungkook asked. 

"I don't know," Jimin said with a sigh, "I can't apologise if I don't mean the words that I say. He already knows how I feel about this, and I know how he feels." 

"How does he feel?" 

"He thinks that our friend should know everything. I don't." Jimin said, "I need more information before I can tell the friend anything. This doesn't just affect our friend. It affects more people than just the three of us." 

Jungkook got off the chair, walking towards Jimin whose eyes were tracking his every movement. 

"Come on," Jungkook said. 

"Where are we going? We can't leave the gym." Jimin said. 

"Just follow me," Jungkook said. 

"Don't you have work to do? You look like you were deep in thought over there," Jimin said, pointing to the computer. 

Jungkook looked back, knowing that the information that Jin sent was on there. He was in the middle of devising a plan when Jimin barged in. But right now, he didn't care. He wanted to spend time with Jimin. He needed to cheer him up. The frown on the pink haired boys face was something that he couldn't stand. He needed to make him smile again even if it was the last thing that he did. 

"No." Jungkook said, "I have nothing important to do." 

"Where are we going?" Jimin asked again, "What about the gym? I told Yoongi that I wouldn't-" 

"Trust me." Jungkook said, reaching down and grabbing Jimin's hand. 

Jimin stared at their intertwined fingers and then looked back up at the raven haired boy that was towering over him, "I trust you." 

Jungkook smiled at him. Real, and genuine. Dimple poking out of his left cheek, as they chubbed up by the sides. Jimin swore, that he could see a shimmer in his eyes. 

"Come on," Jungkook said, pulling him out the room, closing the door behind him. 

Jimin didn't know much about this world, but if he could say one thing - It would be that, Jungkook smiling, was becoming his favourite wonder of the world.

 

~~~

 

Jin walked into the hospital room, hanging up the phone as he walked through the doorframe, closing it behind him. 

"Where's Yoongi?" Was the first question he asked. 

"Made him go downstairs to the cafeteria," Hoseok answered. 

"I'm surprised he left your side," Jin said as he took a seat beside Hoseok's bedside. 

"His stomach was growling so loud but he kept insisting that he was fine," Hoseok said, shaking his head, "I had to basically threaten pulling this IV Drip out of my hand for him to leave."

"He's been worried about you," Jin said, "Wouldn't leave your side when you were under those drugs. I'm surprised he even left now." 

"He worries too much," Hoseok said, fondly. 

"Can you blame him with the line of work we're in?" 

"Jin," Hoseok said. 

"Yeah?"

"You're not still blaming yourself, are you?" 

"Hobi..." Jin sighed. 

"It's not your fault, Jin," Hoseok told him, "You're too harsh on yourself and that has to stop! With what we do, we're going to get hurt one way or another. You can't blame yourself for every cut and bruise that we get!" 

"You were in a coma! You know that? They had to medically induce a coma so that your body could heal itself!" Jin told him, "How is this not my fault?" 

"Were you the one holding the knife? Were you the one who forced me to join this gang in the first place?" Hoseok said, "No! This was my choice! I knew what I was getting myself into." 

"I should have been with you Hobi," Jin said, shaking his head. 

"You weren't meant to be with me anyway!" 

"I was! But then Namjoon called and I..." Jin said, regretfully. 

"You couldn't have predicted the future, Jin," Hoseok said, gently, "You couldn't have known that this was going to happen. You're allowed to love and be loved. You're not just a gang leader, Jin. You're human. You have feelings. You have a heart that needs to be loved and needs to love. That isn't something you should be apologising for." 

"Hoseok, it's not that simple-" 

"I'll tell you about who stabbed me, if you promise me one thing," He told Jin, more seriously now.

"What?" 

"I know who stabbed me." Hoseok said, "And it definitely wasn't that guy in the picture you showed me." 

"Who was it?" 

"No." Hoseok said petulantly, "I'm not telling you anything unless you promise me something." 

"Fine." Jin said, "What is it? What promise do I have to make." 

"Promise me that you will stop blaming yourself for everything." Hoseok said, "Promise me that you will be nicer to yourself." 

"I'll try." Jin said. 

"That's good enough for me," Hoseok said, "But it means you can't blame yourself for this. For what happened to me." 

"Fine. I promise."

"See! Now was that so hard?" Hoseok said, the bright heart shaped grin growing on his face. 

Jin smiled at him fondly. He had missed this. He had missed him. Things just weren't as bright without Hoseok around. 

"Now, show me the picture and get me caught up." Hoseok said, shifting slowly on the bed to get more comfortable, ignoring the pain that shot through his waist, the drugs wearing off. 

"Your boyfriend is going to murder me if he finds out what we're doing," Jin muttered, scrolling through his picture gallery. 

"We're at a hospital," Hoseok said, "They'll patch you up nice and good." 

Jin laughed, shaking his head with fondness. 

"Wait, stop," Hoseok said. 

"What?" 

"Is that him? Is that the boyfriend?" He asked, grinning. 

"I'll tell you about him later! We're kind of on a time crunch if you haven't noticed! Yoongi could come back any second!" 

"Right sorry," Hoseok said quickly, "Continue." 

Jin pulled up the picture of Archer, passing the phone to Hoseok, "That's him." 

"Who is he?" 

"His name is Archer. From what we know, he was hired by the Hwan Clan," Jin informed him. 

"What else?" 

"You weren't his target," Jin said, guilt lacing his voice. 

"What?" 

"We don't know who his target was. He said he was given a picture and told to take them out," Jin said, "But he got the wrong person." 

"But he wasn't even carrying a weapon that night," Hoseok said. 

"Who was?" 

"There were two other men with him," Hoseok said, "Both of them had the same tattoo." 

"You don't mean..." 

"A cracked skull with a crown on top," Hoseok finished. 

"Hwan clan." Jin said, "How many beads were on the crown? Do you remember?" 

"Two." 

"They aren't that high in the ranks then," Jin thought out loud. 

"What now?" Hoseok asked, passing the phone back to Jin. 

"I'll figure something out," Jin said, "I'm still waiting on some information." 

"Why are they targeting us anyway? I thought we had that peace declaration," Hoseok said. 

"I don't know, Seok." 

"Can I ask you something you do know?" 

"What?" 

"That boyfriend of yours," Hoseok said, childlike excitement in his eyes, "Tell me all about him!" 

 

~~~

 

Jimin looked around, taking in his surroundings as he stood beside Jungkook in line. 

"What?" Jungkook asked, noticing how quiet Jimin had become. 

"Nothing," He replied with a shake of his head. 

"Were you expecting me to bring you to some dark alley in the middle of nowhere and murder you or something?" 

"Your words, not mine," Jimin muttered. 

"I enjoy cafe's too," Jungkook said. 

"This is cute." Jimin said. 

He looked around at this warm and small cafe. He would have missed it if he hadn't been introduced to it, due to the huge encompassing buildings almost building a fort around it. Pastries and cakes were displayed in the front beside the cashier and the drink menu was written in colourful chalk on the board behind it, along with a few whimsical drawings and inspiring quotes. Jimin breathed in, drinking in the aroma of freshly baked bread and coffee. He couldn't remember a time where he was early enough to actually stop and enjoy breakfast. Before this, it was always go, go, go. In the rat race of life, there is no mercy for anyone who decides to take a break and stop. 

"Jungkook! You're back!" The cashier greeted with a warm smile and tired eyes. 

"It's been a while, hasn't it," Jungkook replied, lips curving into a smile, eyes softening. 

"We thought you'd forgotten about us," She said. 

"Never!" He replied, dramatically gasping at the thought. 

"Your usual?" She said, already punching in the order. 

"That and," He said, turning to Jimin, "What would you like?" 

"Cappuccino extra hot and the croissant over there, please," He said politely. 

"Coming right up," She said, giving them a plaque with a table number on it and instructing them to take a seat while she gets everything ready. 

"You seem to be a regular here," Jimin said as they sat down. 

"It's a nice place," Jungkook said, almost defensively. 

"I like it," Jimin declared, "It's warm. Secluded, almost."

"That's why I like it," Jungkook said, looking around at the light blue walls and the pictures that were hung on it, a sight that he had come to adore. 

"How did you find it?" Jimin asked. 

"I was just walking one day and I stumbled upon it," He said. 

"I feel like there's something more you aren't telling me," Jimin said, suspicious, an almost teasing smile on his face. 

"No. Nothing," Jungkook said, clearing his throat, trying to maintain the stoic expression on his face. 

"What is it?" Jimin asked.

"I don't drink coffee." Jungkook admitted. 

"What?" 

"I don't drink coffee, and this was the one place I found that was quiet enough so that I wouldn't feel embarrassed about ordering something else," Jungkook muttered. 

Jimin couldn't help but coo at how endearing Jungkook was being. 

"I found this place when I was 16," Jungkook said, "I mean, it's not like I'm embarrassed now about-" 

"Here's your hot chocolate with extra whipped cream and I even added the pink marshmallows that you like," The cashier said, setting down the drink in front of Jungkook who stiffened up, "And here's your cinnamon roll." 

"Thank you." Jungkook muttered, ears turning red. 

"And this is your coffee with a croissant," She said, setting Jimin's food in front of him, "Enjoy guys!" 

Jimin tried to stiffle a giggle. 

"Not a word." Jungkook said, through gritted teeth. 

"I didn't say anything!" Jimin defended. 

"You were thinking it." Jungkook muttered. 

"It's just..." Jimin said, giggling, covering his mouth, "You're this big, bad, buff boy who boxes and has bruises everywhere. But at the same time, you like whipped cream and pink marshmallows on your hot chocolate because you don't drink coffee." 

"What's your point?"

"Every time I think I have you figured out, you surprise me," Jimin said, a smile on his face. 

"In a good way or a bad way?" 

"In a way." He replied vaguely.

Jimin smiled at him, picking up his cup and taking a tentative sip of the coffee, before putting it down again. He looked at the croissant and cut up a piece of it. 

"Fun fact!" Jimin said, excitedly as he bit into the flaky pastry, "Croissants are french for 'Crescent Moon'." 

"What?" 

"They're named croissant after the shape of the bread," Jimin told him. 

"How do you even know this?" 

"Oh come on, Kookie!" Jimin said, "You must know some odd facts here and there!" 

"I don't." Jungkook said, using the spoon to scoop up some whipped cream, ignoring how his heart skipped a beat at the nickname that Jimin gave him. 

"Of course you do! Everyone does!" Jimin said. 

"How many do you know?" 

"A couple." He replied, "Like, oh okay, here's one! The middle finger nail is the one that grows the fastest out of the ten." 

"Why would you even know that?" 

"It's a fun fact!" Jimin defended. 

"But how..." 

"I can't really sleep well at night, so..." Jimin said, trailing off, taking another sip of his coffee.

After a beat of silence, Jungkook spoke up, "The ear has the smallest bone." 

"What?" Jimin said, perking up again. 

"The ear." Jungkook said, holding a part of the ear, "It has the smallest bone, right about here. It's called stapes, and it's literally millimetres long." 

"This is probably my favourite fact," Jimin said, pulling his chair closer to the table, "The same thing that powers the sun, powers a hydrogen bomb." 

"What powers the sun?" Jungkook asked, "Isn't it...just the sun?" 

"No, Fusion power," Jimin answered. 

"I didn't know you liked space," Jungkook said. 

"Guess we still have a lot to learn about each other then," Jimin said, eyes crinkling as he smiled, cheeks puffing up. 

"Cute." Jungkook couldn't help but say, a smile forming on his own face. 

Jimin's cheeks tinted pink. He quickly picked up his coffee cup, taking a sip in hopes that Jungkook wouldn't have noticed the effect he had on him. As much as Jimin didn't want to admit, he missed the burning touch of the raven haired man. He missed the way that he manhandled him, picking him up like he weighed nothing and slamming him into a wall, crashing his lips down on his. He missed the way his hands felt on his skin, searing every inch that he touched. 

"I have one." Jungkook said, tearing him away from his daydream. 

"What?" 

"A duck's quack never echoes." Jungkook told him. 

"Really?" 

"Yeah," He replied with a nod, "I remember learning about it in science class." 

"I've never noticed before..." Jimin said trailing off. 

"Are you thinking about ducks quacking right now?" Jungkook asked, an amused smile playing on his face. 

"...maybe." Jimin said, taking another sip of his coffee. 

They settled into a comfortable silence, with Jimin taking a bite out of his pastry and Jungkook stirring the whipped cream into the hot chocolate. 

"Jimin." Jungkook called out.

"Mhmm?" He hummed, lips around the rim of the coffee cup. 

"Remember what I told you yesterday?" 

"Kind of hard to forget," Jimin teased. 

"I meant about the out..." Jungkook said, trailing off. 

"What about it?" 

"Are you not using it?" He asked. 

"No." Jimin replied, adamantly.

"Why?" Jungkook asked, surprised. 

"Because even though I've only been in the gym for about a week, I don't feel like an outsider. Because Yoongi took me in and told me that we would be a family, and at first, I didn't really believe it, but now I look at the both of you and I feel like I belong." Jimin said, not knowing himself how much of it was real and how much was fabricated.

But it seemed to work, because Jungkook's eyes softened.

"Are you sure you don't want to use it?" Jungkook asked, hoping that his answer would still be no, but wanting to make sure anyway. 

"I'm sure." 

"It's dangerous at the gym, you know," He said. 

"Lucky for me, I have two people to protect me and teach me self defence," Jimin replied. 

"You might die." Jungkook said more bluntly. 

"We all have to die one day," Jimin shrugged. 

"Jin's going to be there a lot." 

"He'll grow to love me," Jimin said, "No one can resist my charms." 

"What if you decide that this was a mistake?" Jungkook asked. 

"It's my mistake to make, and no one else's," Jimin told him, the smile never leaving his face.

"You're sure about this Jimin?" Jungkook asked, softly. 

"I've never been more sure of anything," He replied. 

"What if they make you join the gang?" 

"They can't make me do anything," Jimin told him, "But I'll join if I want to and when I want to." 

"Okay then..." Jungkook said, thinking how wrong he was for judging the pink haired boy by the cover. Maybe he wasn't so fragile after all... 

"Kook," Jimin called out. 

"Yeah?" 

"How did you join the gang?" Jimin asked. 

"It's a long, complicated story." 

"It's not like we have anywhere else to be," Jimin said, taking another sip of his now lukewarm coffee, smirk growing on his face.

"I found Yoongi's gym when I was around 15," Jungkook said, "Back then it wasn't a gym so much as it was an abandoned warehouse of some sort. I told him that I wanted to learn how to defend myself and he was kind enough to take me in. I was alone and I had no one, and Yoongi just...He dropped everything and took care of me. He clothed me, and fed me, and taught me everything I knew." 

Jungkook absentmindedly stirred the hot chocolate, the shimmer in his eyes that Jimin had been admiring the entire time was dulling, eyes growing darker and almost lifeless as Jungkook reflected back on the time. 

"There were hard days, of course," Jungkook said, "One where we wouldn't eat because we barely had any money between the two of us. One where the roof of the gym almost collapsed because of the hard rain and we had to huddle together for warmth.... But we always knew that it would be okay in the end because we had each other." 

Jungkook smiled now, and Jimin smiled with him, listening intently to his story. 

"Then we met Jin. I don't really know how we became best friends, but we just did," Jungkook said, shaking his head fondly, "Jin, Yoongi and I were inseparable. We went everywhere and did everything together! Jin was the only one of us who had a car, so he would drive us everywhere. I remember this one day when his car just broke down in the middle of nowhere and we walked for thirty minutes and came upon a beach. We looked at each other and we just ran! We were throwing sand, building castles, writing out the stupidest things on the sand and throwing each other into the sea. That was probably my favourite day." 

"But then," Jungkook said, eyes darkening again, smile nowhere to be seen, "One day, Jin calls us in panic. He was crying over the phone and Yoongi and I couldn't understand what he was saying. We basically ran all the way to the other side of town where he lived, and he told us that his dad was murdered and that people were coming for him next. We didn't know what to do. I mean how could you expect a 17 year old, who literally just graduated high school, a 20 year old and a 21 year old to figure something like this out?! People our age would be drinking and going clubbing and making bad decisions that they would probably regret when the hangover hits; but here we were, trying to escape actual murder."

Jungkook shook his head, leaning back against the chair with a scoff. 

"Long story short," He said, "We got caught. In that moment, we were sure that we would die, that we would become front page news for the next publication. But we didn't. Jin's father had a loyal friend who grew up with him. He took Jin home and explained everything to him. He told him all about the gang, the business, the people he had under his thumb...He said that it was his turn to learn the ropes now and that he would teach Jin. It was a lot to take in. That night, Yoongi, Jin and I just sat in the gym, neither one of us saying a word, but we all knew what the other was thinking." 

"You joined the gang together." Jimin said. 

"No," Jungkook shook his head, "We waited until Jin learned the ropes. Yoongi and I trained harder and harder every day, so that when Jin finally took over, we would be there by his side." 

"Did he have a choice?" Jimin asked, "Could Jin choose not to join?" 

"It's his father's business. His father's legacy." Jungkook said, "There really wasn't a choice to make." 

"Even if that choice involved murder?" 

"We don't kill innocent people." Jungkook said, mouth in a hard line. 

Jimin said nothing. He didn't want to say the wrong thing. So he just nodded. 

"Jin really is harmless once you get to know him," Jungkook said, softer now, "He's a really nice guy, I can vouch for that. We've all just had complicated lives, and the gang provides a sense of comfort and family." 

"Do they know that you're telling me this?" Jimin asked, before he could control himself. 

"No." Jungkook said. 

"Why are you telling me this?" He asked. 

"Because I trust you." 

"Oh." Jimin said, barely audible. 

Jimin swore he felt his heart skip a beat at Jungkook's words. There was something about it that made warmth spread all over, it made butterflies form in his stomach and it made him giddy in a way that nothing else ever had. 

 

 

Jungkook couldn't take his eyes off Jimin. He couldn't take his eyes off the way his eyes grew twice as wide, shimmering and glittering with awe. His mouth almost formed a natural pout as he looked at Jungkook as if he didn't believe what he had just said. God, Jungkook wanted nothing more than to grab the pink haired boy and smash his lips against his.

Just as Jungkook was about to say something, his phone buzzed with a text message. 

"Do you have to get that?" Jimin asked. 

Jungkook glanced down. 

NEW MESSAGE

From: Jin 

Did you find what you were looking for? 

 

Jungkook's eyes glanced over the message over, and over again. In his head, he knew that Jin was talking about the information that he had sent him earlier. But right now, the only thing that was going through his head was the boy that was sat in front of him. 

At the start of the morning, all Jungkook could think about was wrecking the pink haired boy. He wanted to see him writhe, squirm and moan under his touch. He wanted to see those wide eyes look up at him with tears while his plump lips were working at his cock, over and over again. 

But right now, he could see himself just talking with him. Nothing sexual about it. He could see himself laughing at jokes, and talking about everything, and talking about nothing. He could just see them together, in this cafe that he had never brought anyone else in before. 

"Jungkook?" Jimin asked, worry in his eyes, "Are you okay?" 

Jungkook looked at Jimin, equally scared and surprised, with one thought in his mind - I found something that I didn't even know I was looking for. You.

Chapter Text

"Jin." Jungkook answered on the first ring, leaning back against the leather chair in front of the computer in Yoongi's office. 

"Jungkook, where are you?" He asked, voice low and soft. 

"Yoongi's office in the gym." 

"Any leads?" Jin asked. 

"None as of now, but I'm working on it," Jungkook said, keeping the fact that he had basically spent the better part of the day trying to cheer Jimin up.

Honestly, even he didn't know why he hated seeing a frown on his face, but he just did. The fleeting thought he had in the cafe as he stared at Jimin wide wide, eyes, both equally fearful and full of wonder was imprinted in his brain. He had never felt this way about anything or anyone before, and it scared him. He didn't want to admit that maybe, just maybe, he had more emotion than just anger and sadness.

"Kook, you still there?" Jin said, pulling him back into reality. 

"Yeah," He answered, "Bad reception."

"You sure you didn't find anything?" Jin asked. 

"I think I have something, but it's just a location. No names or anything more substantive," Jungkook said. 

"Where?" 

"Downtown." Jungkook said, eyes glancing over the map in front of him, "By 57th. The new bar that just opened up." 

"Hmm..." Jin said, gears turning in his head. 

"I could check it out tomorrow night," Jungkook said. 

"Want backup?" 

"Nah," He said, dismissively, "I'll just be scouring the area for anything I can find. I don't think I need backup for this."

"I'll discuss it more with you tomorrow," Jin said. 

"What's happening tomorrow?" 

"We're bringing Hobi home," Jin replied, voice brighter now, "We're just waiting on some test results, but the doctor said that he's out of the danger zone and now all that's left is the recovery period." 

"Good." Jungkook said, a wide smile breaking out on his face. 

"He can't wait to see you," Jin said, knowing that Jungkook needed to hear that, "He misses you." 

"Same." Jungkook said, a warmth spreading in his chest. "I'll see you tomorrow, I have keep working on this." 

Jungkook hung up the phone and switched tabs, scrolling through the website. 

 

~~~

 

Jimin was tapping his foot anxiously as he sat on the edge of the ring. He glanced at the number on his phone, checking the time, overthinking about whether or not he should call. 

"Screw it." He mumbled to himself, pressing the number and bringing the phone to his ear before he could change his mind. 

It rang once. 

It rang twice. 

And they picked up. 

"Jimin." 

"I didn't think you would pick up," Jimin said honestly. 

"What do you want?" 

"I honestly didn't think I would get this far," He mumbled, not knowing what to say.

 

Silence engulfed the conversation. Neither one spoke. The only sounds being exchanged were the soft sounds of them breathing. 

"Did you know that ducks quacks don't echo?" Jimin said, breaking the silence. 

"What?" 

"Ducks." Jimin repeated, "Their quacks never echo." 

There was silence before Jimin spoke up again. 

"You're thinking of ducks quacking right now, aren't you?" He said. 

There was a beat of silence before the phone cracked statically and the voice said, "Yes." 

Jimin giggled first before the only sounds that were being exchanged over the phone were laughs. 

"I miss you, Tae," Jimin said. 

"I miss you too, Minnie." 

"It's been two days since we've talked. I honestly don't know how I survived," Jimin said. 

"It was weird for me, too," Taehyung said. 

"We have to talk." Jimin said. 

"I know." 

"Are you free tonight?" Jimin asked.

"We could meet after work? There's a new bar that opened up near 57th," Taehyung said. 

"I'll be there," Jimin said, quickly.

"Alright." Taehyung said, awkwardness settling in between them. The unresolved tension hanging heavy in the air.

"See you tonight," Jimin said. 

Taehyung hung up first which made Jimin sigh and lean against the post of the ring. 

"What's got you so down?" 

"How do you always show up announced? Is this some sort of magic trick?" Jimin said.

"I work mysteriously," Jungkook said, walking up to Jimin who had a frown on his face, "What's wrong?" 

"I just got off the phone with Tae," Jimin told him, looking down at his phone, "I can tell he's still mad about the whole thing."

"At least he's talking to you again," Jungkook said, "There's a plus point." 

"Yeah..." Jimin said with a sigh, trailing off, and leaning his head back against the padding of the pole. 

"You want to hear something interesting?" Jungkook said, wanting to see a smile on Jimin's face again. He couldn't bear to see the pink haired boy down. There was a little in the middle of his furrowed eyebrows every time there was a frown on Jimin's face. As cute as it was, Jungkook would rather see the crescent of his eyes and the small dimple on his right cheek instead.

"What?" Jimin said, voice soft. 

"Did you know that when the moon is directly overhead, you weigh slightly less?" Jungkook said, sitting down on the bleachers in front of Jimin.

"Really?" Jimin said, perking up. 

"Yeah," Jungkook confirmed with a nod. 

"Where did you hear that from?" 

"Oh, uhh, it's just something I learnt in science class," Jungkook said, ears heating up from the lie as he cleared his throat. 

"Wow, first the duck thing and now this, I really should have been in your school during science class," Jimin said, the wrinkle between his brows clearing up and the twinkle returning in his eyes as they disappeared with his smile. 

"There it is," Jungkook said softly to himself, a smile growing slowly on his face. 

"Did you say something?" Jimin asked. 

"No. Nothing at all," Jungkook told him as he leaned back. 

"Okay, I have one!" Jimin said. 

"Hit me." 

"Did you know that a snail can sleep for three years straight," Jimin told him. 

"So, Yoongi, basically," Jungkook said with a little laugh. 

"Does he sleep for long?" Jimin asked. 

"Let's put it this way," Jungkook said, "It's easier to teach a monkey to use a typewriter than it is to wake Yoongi up." 

"That's an...interesting analogy," Jimin said, giggling at the visual. 

Jungkook swore that his heart sped up and warmth spread through his chest from that giggle. But he would never admit it. 

"Oh Jungkook," Jimin called out, suddenly remembering something. 

"Yeah, Jimin?" 

"I wanted to thank you." 

"Thank me? What for?" Jungkook asked, confused. 

"For yesterday," He said, "I was feeling really down and you really helped me. I know you must have been busy with your own thing, but it really meant a lot to me that you were there. Plus, that little cafe seemed to mean a lot to you, so...just...thank you." 

"Anytime." Jungkook said, cheeks tinting pink, not used to the sincerity and the warmth that coated Jimin's every word. 

"So," Jimin said, sensing Jungkook's unease, "Anything special planned for today?" 

"Not really," Jungkook said, "Oh, but you might meet Hoseok today!" 

"He's coming back from the hospital?" Jimin asked. 

"You remembered," Jungkook said, surprised. 

"This is my little family too, isn't it?" Jimin said with a small smile, relief flooding his body from the fleeting thought that he was almost caught with the information that he had memorised.

If Jimin was being honest, last night when he was typing out the new information that he had gotten from Jungkook, he felt guilty. After every few words, he would stop and stare blankly at the words on the word document that he had opened. Every couple of minutes, he would have to tell himself that he was doing the right thing, that his job mattered more than these people that he had just met. His job mattered more than Jungkook. His job mattered more than the coffee and the croissants and the little looks that he would shoot Jimin. His job mattered more than the cold hard exterior that Jungkook kept presenting to the world, and the softness that he showed only Jimin. His job matters more, right? 

"He's coming home today," Jungkook said, bringing Jimin's attention back to him. 

"What?" 

"Hobi." Jungkook said, "Hoseok. He's coming home today." 

"That's amazing!" Jimin said, excitedly, seeing the smile grow bigger and bigger on Jungkook's face, "What are you doing to celebrate?" 

"Nothing." 

"You're kidding, right?" Jimin asked, mouth slightly agape. 

"No?" 

"He's coming home after ages of being away in the hospital, and you're doing nothing to celebrate? No party? No cake? No actual food that isn't hospital garbage?" Jimin rambled. 

"No?" Jungkook said, more unsure now. He felt like a child being scolded by a teacher. 

"This is unacceptable!" Jimin declared, jumping back down onto the ground, "What time is Hoseok coming?" 

"Probably after his test results come back, so maybe 1 or 2?" Jungkook guessed. 

Jimin looked down at his watch, "Okay, that gives us about 3 hours to set everything up."

"Set everything- Wait, what's happening?" Jungkook said, incredibly confused. 

"I think I can get the cake and the streamers and balloons, all you have to do is get a banner and maybe we can write-" Jimin started to say quickly but cut himself off, "No, we don't have enough time to write out the whole banner. It would have to be printed. I think I can get a rush job on it, but I might have to pull some strings. Okay so, you can collect that while I run around for decorations. Meet back here in an hour! Tops!" 

Jungkook's face was blank as he stared at Jimin, wide, confused eyes, blinking at him. 

"Got it?" Jimin asked. 

"No." He said, shaking his head, a small frown on his face. 

"I'll text you!" Jimin said, grabbing his phone and his bag and quickly walking towards the door, "Be back in an hour!"

"W-What just happened? Are we having a party?" Jungkook said to a now empty gym, his phone buzzing with a flurry of texts from Jimin.

 

~~~

 

"Left, Jungkook!" Jimin called out with a wave of his hand, "Left!" 

"I'm going left!" Jungkook said, on the ladder, trying to hang up the printed banner on the wall. 

"Not your left! My left!" Jimin told him, waving his hand as though that would make a difference. 

"That's right, Jimin!" Jungkook said with a sigh, rolling his eyes as he adjusted the direction.

"I know I'm right," Jimin said, grinning at his lame pun. 

Jungkook stopped and turned back to see the fluffy, pink haired boy with an accomplished smile on his face, "Proud of yourself?" 

"Immensely." Jimin answered. 

"God, you and Jin are going to get along so well, it scares me," Jungkook muttered under his breath as he turned his attention back to the banner.

"Little bit more up," Jimin called out, "Up, up, up, and stop!" 

"Good?" Jungkook asked, the string in his hand to tie the banner to the wall. 

"Good! You can tie it now." Jimin said, tape in hand just in case extra security was needed. 

"Tape." Jungkook said, reaching his hand down, with his attention focused on the banner so that it wouldn't move. 

The streamers and balloons were already set up and there was a cake in the box with candles and a matchbox next to it on the bleachers. Jimin had never been more excited to decorate. The gym was dull and sometimes even full of tension, so to see it with a pop of colour made him happy. The plus point to all of this would be that he would make a good first impression on Hoseok, and with Jin hating him, he needed all the people on his side as possible. The more people that trusted him, the more likely Jin would too. If all that fails, Jimin could just use his secret weapon - Namjoon. With Namjoon in his corner, Jimin was pretty sure that Jin would have to like him. He was sure that Namjoon knew nothing about the gang life that Jin led, and if Jimin's suspicions were correct, Jin wouldn't want it to get out either. 

"Tape!" Jimin repeated walking over to the ladder and standing on his tip toes as he reached out and gave a piece of tape to Jungkook. 

"Jimin! Tape!" 

"Look, I'm trying! You're just going to have to bend further!" Jimin whined, tip toeing further. 

"What?" Jungkook said, looking down from the banner to Jimin who was clearly struggling to get to Jungkook who was standing at the top of the ladder. 

Jimin wasn't the shortest person ever, but he was short. To have Jungkook, who was significantly taller than him, standing on the top rung of the ladder with his hand extended downwards, wasn't the best show of his height. 

Jungkook shouldn't have been that endeared by how adorable Jimin was looking, struggling to get tape to him; but he was. He wanted nothing more than to coo at the pink haired man. As quick as the thought came, he had to shake it off. Jungkook couldn't do this. He couldn't be soft. Not for anyone. Even if that someone was Jimin. 

He turned back to the banner and tied it as tightly as he could to the small nail that was on the wall before carefully bending down and getting the pieces of tape from Jimin's outstretched hand. Once the banner was secured, Jungkook jumped down from the ladder. 

"I feel like we're missing something," Jimin said. 

"What could be missing?" Jungkook said, folding the ladder, before carrying it over to the storage closet, "We have streamers, balloons, a whole ass banner and even cake. Trust me, it's more than enough." 

"You say that as though you never do this sort of thing," Jimin said. 

"We don't!" Jungkook told him, "This is...showy. We don't do showy." 

"You don't celebrate birthdays?" 

"Not like this." 

"Then, like what?" Jimin asked, curious. 

"Oh come on, Jimin," Jungkook said, almost scoffing, "You've got to know." 

"I really don't," He said with a shrug, feeling small and naive. 

"Jimin, we're in a gang." Jungkook reminded, "What do you think we do?" 

"I really don't know." Jimin said. 

"Drugs. Sex. Booze. Nightclubs..." Jungkook said, "Does any of this sound like balloons and streamers, and banners to you?" 

"That's incredibly stereotypical, don't you think?" 

"Stereotypes exist for a reason." 

"So break them," Jimin said, with a shrug, "What's the point of being stereotypical? Weren't you the one who basically went off on me for assuming that you were a typical bad boy the first day we met? Sounds to me like you need to try new things, Jeon Jungkook. " 

"You're new." Jungkook found himself saying, "I'm trying with you, aren't I?' 

"Oh." Jimin said, blinking at Jungkook who couldn't believe that he had said what he said. 

Jungkook cleared his throat, scratching the back of his neck as he looked around the gym, "You did a really good job with the, uhm, decorating. Really colourful." 

"Yeah?" Jimin said, looking around, "Thanks. Couldn't have done it without you." 

"Oh I did nothing," Jungkook said, brushing off the comment before whipping his phone out, "I'm going to check with Yoongi about what time he's coming." 

"Yeah, you do that," Jimin said, "I'm going to...uhh check on the cake and see if it's...yeah." 

Before they could even take a step, they heard a noise of a car pulling up. 

"I think they're here," Jungkook said. 

"I'll get the cake!" Jimin whispered excitedly before practically dashing to the bleachers to grab the cake out of the box. 

Jungkook smiled fondly at him, walking to stand under the banner, knowing how much the older boys were going to make fun of him for such a big display of affection later. But it was all worth it to see Jimin smile and beam, and glow with happiness. There was something about the Jimin's smile and eyes that really did it for him, and Jungkook couldn't understand what it was. But whatever it was, he really liked it. 

Jimin walked over with the candles already lit and the cake securely held between both hands. 

"You should hold it," Jimin whispered as he walked closer to Jungkook. 

"No way." Jungkook said, "I'm already under the big banner."

"It would look weird if I held it," Jimin said, "Hoseok doesn't even know me." 

"Jimin-" Jungkook started to protest. 

"Please, Kookie?" Jimin said, staring at him with wide, pleading eyes and a small pout on his face. 

Jungkook swore his heart stopped for a minute. He knew that if Jimin ever asked for anything with that face again, he would do it. Even if it meant that he had to swim all the way to Australia. 

"Fine." Jungkook said, taking the cake from Jimin who now had a victorious smile on his face. 

Jimin started to back away from under the banner when he heard footsteps, suddenly feeling awkward.

"Where are you going?" Jungkook asked. 

"Oh uhh, Hoseok doesn't know me so-" 

"Don't be stupid Jimin," Jungkook said, "You're family now." 

His breath hitched in his throat with the amount of sincerity that he heard Jungkook say that with. 

"Come here," Jungkook said, motioning with his head for Jimin to stand next to him. 

"What if he doesn't like me?" 

"Hobi likes everyone, trust me," Jungkook said. 

"If he doesn't-" 

"I'll buy you an island if he doesn't," Jungkook said confidently. 

"Damn, you have that kind of money?" Jimin muttered. 

"Why? Looking for a sugar daddy?" Jungkook smirked, teasingly. 

"I might be now," Jimin whispered back, hyperaware of how close they were.

Jungkook could already hear Hoseok's voice from inside the gym and was getting more and more excited. He hadn't seen Hoseok since the hospital when he had tubes sticking out of him and was on a machine. To already know that he was feeling more like himself - loud and happy, was more of a relief than anything. 

"Is that him?" Jimin whispered. 

"The voice?" Jungkook asked, not bothering to wait for a reply, "Yeah. That's Hobi, alright." 

The door was swung opened and immediately the gym lit up with a bright presence. 

"Welcome back!" Jimin and Jungkook announced in unison, standing under the bright, big, colourful banner with smiles on their faces. 

"What's this?" Hoseok said excitedly, "Oh my god! Is this all for me?" 

He looked around, scanning the gym with a huge smile on his face. 

"This is..." Jin muttered, glancing around, "Definitely not Jungkook's work." 

"Told you he was whipped," Yoongi mumbled under his breath, loud enough for only Jin to hear. 

"Hmm.." 

"What?" Yoongi said, watching Jungkook hand the cake off to Jimin who set it down on the ring, before engulfing Hoseok into a hug. 

"Maybe Jimin is worth giving a chance to." Jin said. 

"Finally cracking?" Yoongi said with a smirk. 

"No." 

"It's the pink hair." Yoongi told him, "It lures everyone in. 

"It's the pink hair that's the reason I'm suspicious." Jin muttered, "You haven't told him yet, have you?" 

"About the gang?" Yoongi asked. 

"Yeah." 

"No, I haven't," Yoongi said, "I was going to." 

"Maybe hold off for now." Jin said.

"Be careful, Kook!" Yoongi called out, "He's not to be manhandled right now." 

"Makes your job a lot harder doesn't it?" Jungkook said, shooting Yoongi a smirk. 

"Bold of him to assume you're a top," Jin quipped. 

"Shut up." 

"And you must be Jimin?" Hoseok said, turning to face the pink haired man. 

"Cake?" Jimin offered timidly. 

"Not right now, thank you," Hoseok said, politely. 

"Nice to finally meet you," Jimin told him, "I have heard a lot about you from everyone."

"As have I." 

"All good things I hope," Jimin giggled. 

Hoseok glanced at Jungkook who was trying to remain stoic, but Hoseok knew better.

"Mostly." Hoseok teased. 

"You know, Jimin threw this whole thing together for you," Jungkook said, finding himself wanting Hoseok's approval for Jimin. 

"I had a feeling it was him," Hoseok said with a smile. 

"Honestly, I did nothing," Jimin said, "Jungkook did all the work. I just got to boss him around." 

"Oh, did he now?" 

"It wasn't bossing!" Jungkook said, "It was just...directing." 

"But you listened." Hoseok said, smirking, having fun teasing the younger boy. 

"Does he not do that normally?" Jimin said. 

"Not with us, he doesn't," Hoseok said, glancing over at Jungkook, "Looks like I have to dye my hair pink too." 

"Coming, Yoongi!" Jungkook said loudly. 

"I didn't call you!" Yoongi shouted back. 

"For fuc-" Jungkook muttered under his breath, stalking angrily at Yoongi, leaving behind a giggly Jimin and Hoseok. 

"Sorry about that," Hoseok said, "I enjoy teasing him." 

"That's okay! I enjoyed it too!" Jimin said, bright and cheery, "He really missed you by the way." 

"And he told you that?" 

"Yeah, he did," Jimin said, nodding eagerly. 

"Wow, they really weren't lying, were they," Hoseok thought out loud. 

"Who? About what?" 

"He's different with you," Hoseok said, "That's all." 

"Kookie?" Jimin asked. 

"Kookie?" Hoseok repeated, a dimpled grin on his face, "Is that what you call him?"

"Sometimes." 

"And he lets you?" 

"...yes?" Jimin said, not really understanding the point. 

"Remind me not to get stabbed again," Hoseok said. 

"I hope you don't plan on doing it again! I've only been here a week but everyone was a mess!" 

"It's hard being the favourite at times," Hoseok joked. 

"Wow, Jungkook wasn't wrong," Jimin thought out loud. 

"About me being the favourite?" 

"About you being the literal form of sunshine." Jimin said with a giggle. 

Yoongi walked up to the both of them, putting a hand on Hoseok, needing to feel his warmth, "I see you two are getting on well." 

"Jiminie is my new best friend," Hoseok said, smiling at the pink haired boy in front of him. 

"I'll have to learn to live with that pain," Yoongi said, "Now if you excuse me I have work to do." 

"Oh, Yoongi?" Jimin said, before Yoongi could leave. 

"Yeah?" 

"Do you mind if I go back early today?" Jimin asked. 

"Go for it," Yoongi said with a shrug, "There isn't going to be training today anyway." 

"Great! I'll see you tomorrow then!" Jimin grinned. 

"Bye Jimin." Yoongi said with a small wave before making his way into his office. 

"You're leaving already?" Hoseok asked. 

"I have some errands to run before catching up with a friend," Jimin said with a smile, "But it was really nice to meet you!" 

"I have a feeling we'll be seeing a lot more of each other, Jiminie," Hoseok said. 

"Me too, Hoseok," Jimin said, not being able to hold back a smile when Hoseok was grinning at him. 

"Call me Hobi. All my friends do, anyway."

"See you tomorrow, Hobi." 

"See you!" Hoseok said before adding, "Oh, and Jimin? Thank you for this. I really appreciate it." 

"Anything for a friend," Jimin said, grabbing his bag. 

"Jimin." Jin said with a nod. 

"Bye, Jin," Jimin said with a small smile, before heading off.

"What was that?" Jungkook asked, sending the tension between Jimin and Jin. 

"Nothing," Jin said. 

"Jin..." 

"I just...I don't know enough about Jimin to fully trust him, that's all," Jin said. 

"Isn't it enough that I trust him?" Jungkook said. 

"Your judgement is a little clouded right now, Kook," Jin said. 

"I could say the same for you and your boyfriend," Jungkook shot back. 

"Kook." Jin warned. 

"What, Jin?" Jungkook challenged, "Aren't I right?" 

Jin let out a breath, calming himself down before he said anything that he couldn't take back. "What do you want, Jungkook?"

"For you to trust me and my judgement." 

"And what is your judgement?" 

"That he can be trusted." Jungkook said. 

"How do you know that?" 

"The fact that he literally jumped in front of a gun for me after knowing me for all of two seconds."

"What else?" Jin said. 

"I told him." Jungkook said. 

"You did what now?" 

"I told him about us. About the gang." 

"Jungkook!" Jin wanted to scream. 

"What?" 

"Why did you do that?!" 

"I told you that I trusted him," Jungkook said. 

"We could be in danger, you know that right?!" 

"If we were in danger, we would have been days ago," Jungkook said. 

"When did you tell him?" 

"The day that you pointed a gun at him." Jungkook said. 

Jin kept quiet. 

"You're mad." Jungkook observed. 

"It wasn't your decision to make." 

"I've been with you since day one, Jin." Jungkook reminded, "It's as much my decision as it is yours." 

"It's ours to make, Kook! And you did it alone." 

"Don't you trust me?" Jungkook said, in an almost broken voice. 

"I do." 

"Then, trust my judgement." 

"I don't trust him." Jin said. 

"You don't even know him!" 

"Neither do you!" 

"I know him enough to know that he's a good person, Jin." Jungkook said. 

"Jungkook..." Jin said, letting out a breath. 

"I gave him an out," Jungkook said, "I told him that we were in a gang and that if he wanted to leave, he could. But he didn't, Jin. He stayed. He threw this party for someone he didn't even know because he thought it would be a nice gesture! He bought a cake, and a banner, and all of this stuff despite the fact that he got fired! Who does that, Jin?" 

"Okay, Kook," Jin said, finally relenting, "I can see how much he means to you."

"What? No! He means nothing to me!" Jungkook said, scoffing, "I was just saying-"

"Hey, Kook!" Yoongi called out. 

"What?" Jungkook said, relieved for the sudden intervention.

"Did you use my computer today?" Yoongi asked. 

"Yeah, why?" 

"Are you sure?" He asked again. 

"I was the only one who was in your office, Yoongi!" 

"Just wondering why it was opened to 'Top 50 Most Interesting Unknown Facts', that's all," Yoongi said, closing the tab. 

"So about the recon job tonight..." Jungkook said, clearing his throat, the tip of his ears matching the growing colour of his cheeks.

 

~~~

 

Jimin was halfway through his drink, sat at the corner booth as he waited for Taehyung. A small part of him was scared that his best friend wouldn't show up, but the bigger, more rational part of him knew that no matter how bad the fight gets, there was no way that Taehyung would set him up for humiliation by standing Jimin up with no explanation.

Jimin brought the gin and tonic up to his lips and took a big sip, relishing the burning sensation as he set his glass down, the nerves calming a bit. He didn't know why he was so nervous in the first place. This was Taehyung. His best friend. His soulmate. Someone he's spent nights crying to, and laughing with, and someone who was his escape when everything went to shit.

Sure, he's had fights with Taehyung before, but never one that was as serious as this. Maybe that's why he was nervous - because he knew that he was being selfish by not telling Namjoon about Jin. But at the same time, this was his life on stake. This was his job that hung in the balance. But there was this nagging thought at the back of Jimin's mind telling him that it wasn't just the job...or Namjoon...That there was something else here that he wasn't seeing. Something important enough to make him hold onto the gym, and hold onto the people he met there. But Jimin pushed the thought away, not wanting to explore it further., He had enough on his plate and his mind as it is. 

Before he knew it, his glass was empty and Taehyung was sitting on front of him. 

"So." Taehyung said, drink menu in hand. 

"So." Jimin repeated, already knowing that he would be ordering a Gin and Tonic again, except this time, it would be a double instead of a single.

"Gin and tonic," Taehyung said looking at the empty glass in front of Jimin.

"Some things don't change, Tae," Jimin said.

"That's what I thought too before I was proven otherwise," Taehyung said. 

"Tae..." Jimin said, trailing off. 

"What, Jimin?" He said, annoyed, "What could you possibly say right now that would make all of this better?!" 

Jimin said nothing. He honestly was taken aback by Taehyung's reaction. He wasn't expecting him to be so blunt, and rude, and...mad. He thought that talking about this over drinks would make everything okay. 

"Tae, you have to look at it from my point of view," Jimin said, calmly, trying to be patient. 

"From your point of view?!" Taehyung repeated, and then scoffed, "Jimin literally a week ago, the wildest, most outlandish thing you did was go to that fight. That was literally the riskiest thing you've ever done! And now you're hanging out with gang members? You're choosing them over Namjoon and I, your actual friends!" 

"This is my job, Tae. I need to do this-" 

"Do you though, Jimin?" 

"What's that supposed to mean?" 

"Is this even about your job anymore?" Taehyung asked, "Because the Jimin I know would have told Namjoon right away rather than put some stupid job over his friends wellbeing." 

"My job isn't stupid and you know it!" Jimin said, getting angry now. 

"You were literally writing fluff pieces that no one was even reading!" Taehyung snapped. 

"And here I thought that my best friend would understand." 

"Best friend is kind of pushing it at this point, don't you think?" Taehyung spat, venom lacing his every syllable. 

Neither of them spoke. The words that Taehyung uttered, hanging in the air, cutting Jimin like a sword. 

"Jimin, I didn't-" Taehyung started to say but Jimin shook his head. 

He couldn't. Jimin couldn't right now. What was said could not be unsaid. He simply took his wallet out and slapped down some money on the dirty bar table, ignoring Taehyung as he tried to stop him. 

Jimin needed to be alone. To be away from Taehyung right now. 

"Jimin, I didn't mean it! I was just-" 

"I can't." Jimin said, voice cracking, "Not now. Just...leave me alone." 

Taehyung slumped down in the booth, hanging his head in his hands. He let anger get the best of him and he pushed Jimin away because of it. 

Jimin needed to be alone. He couldn't be near anyone right now. He just needed to think. But most importantly, whatever he needed to do, he needed to do it alone, away from pretending to be the person he was at the gym, and away from his friends. The latter part would be easier considering that he only had two friends: Namjoon and Taehyung...Or was it one friend now? He didn't know. His head was a mess, his thoughts were running wild and his tendency to overthink was working in overdrive right now. The worst part of all of this, was that he didn't know where he was. Jimin had never been in this part of town before, nor has he ever been this cold before. But honestly, he didn't care. He was sad. He was angry. He was devastated that his best friend lashed out at him rather than having a normal conversation. Whether or not Jimin was overreacting was something he could think about tomorrow. But right now, with tears pricking his eyes, and goosebumps from the cold, harsh wind blooming on his skin, Jimin needed to get away, and wallow in his thoughts. 

He turned a corner, hoping that there would be more people than the empty, dark street that he was walking on, but he didn't find anyone. He continued to walk, following the cracked tar on the road that he was on, too much in his thoughts to think about the fact that it was a stupid idea to walk on a street with barely any lights and no sense of direction of where Jimin was going. 

As he kept walking, he saw a neon sign and heard loud laughs and catcalls. He ignored it, thinking that it was just people being drunk. He continued to walk, too much in his own head to notice that the laughs were getting louder, footsteps gaining on him. 

"Hey cotton candy, let me get some sugar, eh?!" A voice behind him said, slurring their words followed by a loud laugh from the other boys in the group.

Jimin couldn't care less. He was upset enough already. He had dealt with the catcalling enough to know that ignoring it was the only way to go. 

"Where you going pretty?
"Oh come on, just some sugar!"
"What? You too good for us?!

They just got louder, and louder, and closer, and closer. 

Jimin has had it with them. 

He turned around, mouth in a straight line, tears already in his eyes but anger overtaking him. All of the emotions that he had been holding back over the last three days, suddenly manifesting itself in angry tears. Jimin couldn't stand the fact that it looked like he was crying because of their catcalls, but that was what it looked like. 

"Leave me the hell alone before I call the cops!" Jimin shouted. 

A beat of silence passed before the four men in front of him burst out laughing. 

One of them stumbled forward, only an inch away from Jimin, towering over him, reeking of cheap whiskey and sweat as he spat out, "Go ahead, babycakes. Call them." 

Jimin shook his head, disgusted by his behaviour. He turned around, moving to walk away, but the man pulled him back flush against his chest, his lips mouthing at his neck as he said, "I told you to do something, didn't I?" 

"He didn't listen," Another one slurred from behind him, "Should we teach him a lesson?" 

Fear washed through Jimin as he turned around, pushing the man away from him, tears falling freely down his face, scared and alone. He didn't know what to do. "Leave me alone!"

The street was dark, but Jimin could almost make out their faces through the tears and the dim street lights. He could also make out a similar tattoo that was on their skin, peeking out from the sleeves of their shirts. 

"Oh! Babycakes is brave, isn't he?" The man in front of him said, a dirty smirk on his face. 

Jimin started to walk backwards, wanting nothing more than to run, but not knowing where to go, or where the road that was on even lead. The man simply chuckled at Jimin's feeble attempts to get away from him. He caught hold of Jimin's wrist, moving to pull him closer when someone interrupted them.

"He said to leave him alone." A voice from behind the men said, steely and gruff. 

The four men turned around, to see a figure standing merely inches away from them, hands in the pocket of his black hoodie, raven hair falling over his eyes that were full of rage, and fire. 

Jimin felt a sob of relief wreck through him, still shaking from fear and anger. 

"Who is this joker?" The drunken man slurred. 

"You have three seconds to let him go." Was all the hooded man said, jaw taut with anger, locked in place, while his eyes stared at the Jimin's wrist that was being held. 

The man chuckled and then hiccuped. 

"Three." 

"You can't be-" The man started to say.

"Two." 

"What do you think you're going to-" 

"One. Time's up." He said, voice dropping an octave. 

Jimin swore that if he would have blinked, he would have missed the whole thing. He would have missed the way the hood came off as Jungkook grabbed the closest man near him by hand, just like the man who was holding Jimin's wrist was, and punched him square on the jaw, watching the man drop. He moved to the next man, kicking him in the shin, and then punching him, once, twice, before pushing him down on the ground, growling as he pulled the third man towards him. All of this while not being hit even once. The fact that these men were drunk did help that they were less coordinated that they would have been, and if they had been sober, they probably would have had more chance of actually surviving Jungkook's fists. Once the third man was down for the count, Jungkook stalked up to the man holding Jimin's wrist. 

"Let. Him. Go." Jungkook punctuated, voice full of gravel, anger dripping from every word. "Now." 

The man let Jimin's hand go. Jimin quickly moved behind Jungkook, wanting nothing more than to hide in his hoodie and feel Jungkook's warmth. But he did nothing. He simply hid behind him, trying to hold back the sob that was threatening to come out. 

Jungkook moved to hit the man but felt Jimin pull his black hoodie back. He spun around, looking at Jimin who just looked so frustrated and tired. Jungkook felt another wave of anger surge through him. 

"Kook." Jimin said, and suddenly the anger was replaced by the need to protect him. "Please. Let's go." 

Jungkook turned back to Jimin. He saw the wide eyes, full of tears, and saw the way Jimin was shivering in the cold. The anger melted away. Jungkook's once dark eyes lightened, returning back to brown, and his taut jaw slackened, unlocking itself as Jungkook looked at him.

Before he could do anything, Jungkook turned back to the man.

"Leave. Now, before I change my mind and put your ass in a mortuary." 

Jungkook didn't bother waiting for a response as he unzipped his hoodie and put it on Jimin, zipping it up. He put his arm around the smaller boy, rubbing his hand up and down as he tried to warm him up while walking. 

"Whe-Where are we going?" Jimin asked. 

"To my car," Jungkook said, "I'm going to take you home." 

"No." Jimin told him, shaking his head, "I re-really don't want to go home, right now." 

Jungkook had a million questions to ask. But he knew that now wasn't the time. So he said nothing. 

"We could go to mine?" Jungkook asked, softly not wanting Jimin to feel like he was taking advantage of the situation. 

"Please." Jimin said softly, wrapping himself further into the hoodie that smelt like Jungkook. 

"Okay, Jimin," Jungkook nodded, pulling him closer into him, feeling the cold wind blow stronger, "Anything for you." 

And Jungkook found himself really meaning it. He looked down at the pink haired boy, and realised, that he actually would do anything for him. 

 

 

Chapter Text

Jungkook was sat on the couch with his laptop on his lap as he laid down, scrolling and switching through tabs, trying to figure out as much information for Jin as he could. Once in a while, he would look up from his screen, and into the bedroom where he had left the door opened for Jimin, just in case. He didn't know why, but hearing the soft snores, or the occasional rustle of the sheets as Jimin tossed and turned was oddly comforting to him. That, plus the fact that he had never actually brought home anyone else but members of the gang. But sitting on the couch, doing work, while Jimin slept in his bed was...different. A good different. 

He turned back to the screen, having to work extra hard to get any information on the lead that Jin gave him. His little field trip to the bar was cut short because of Jimin. He had no regrets in saving him, but it just meant that the location that he had on the lead could have run cold and he would need to find a new one. Had this been anyone else except Jimin, he might have been pissed, he might have screamed and shouted on the streets, or maybe even not bothered to save him at all. But this wasn't anyone else. This was Jimin. 

He couldn't help himself as he snuck another glance at the pink haired boy who was engulfed in a black shirt that Jungkook loaned him along with shorts that he had to tie tightly around his waist because he was smaller than the raven haired boy. Even with red rimmed, puffy eyes, flushed cheeks and small streaks of leftover tears - Jimin was still so beautiful. 

After what happened tonight, Jungkook had come to many realisations, and all of them had to do with Jimin. 

 

"I'm at 57th now," Jungkook said to Jin on the phone, "Just heard that there were 2 other hot spots where the Hwan clan could be hanging out, so I'm going to check those out too. Might be out late." 

"Be safe." Jin said. 

"Always am."  

"We just got Hobi back, Kook," Jin said in a soft voice, usually never this sentimental, "I don't want to go through losing you." 

Jungkook paused, not used to this explicit side of Jin. 

A beat of silence lapsed to the conversation, both knowing what the other wanted to say, but not saying it. Neither one of them was used to vulnerability, or opening up. They've been friends, and family, for a long time, but they never were this open about their feelings. It was always in actions, and implied words, rather than explicit, big gestures of love.

Jungkook settled for a soft, "I'll be safe." 

He hung up the phone, clearing his throat while looking at the black screen of the phone, as if in shock. He shook his head, telling himself that it was just the fact that Hoseok was home which was making Jin a little sentimental. He pocketed his phone in the front pocket of his jeans, before walking over to the first bar.

As soon as he crossed the road, the neon sign of the bar blinked in welcome, the smell of flavoured hookah and cigarettes filled his nose, a familiar scent. He walked passed the smokers on the curb, already smelling sweat and alcohol from the outside of the bar. For a bar that was meant to be new, it was already dirty and filled with people that looked big enough to wreck it to the ground in a matter of minutes. Jungkook through the door, the music being covered up by hoards of laughs and conversation, by the sound of snooker balls being hit in the corner and people talking over one another. 

He did a quick scan of the room, trying to identify anyone suspicious, even try to get a glimpse of the familiar cracked skull tattoo that he came here to find. He walked up to the bar counter, and placed an order. Leaning against the counter until the drink was made, he could already feel eyes on him. Some gazing at him like he was a piece of meat, wanting nothing more than to devour him, and others, looking at him suspiciously. But he paid them no mind, only focused on one thing and one thing only - Finding anyone from the Hwan clan. He needed to get their new hang out, to find their nest. 

Half an hour went by, and still, Jungkook had nothing. He was two drinks down and had circled the entire bar twice. No Hwan clan. No tattoo. Nobody suspicious.

The lead was cold. 

Jungkook downed the remains of his drink, almost cracking the glass with the force that he slammed it with on the counter, out of frustration, and walked out of the bar. He took a deep breath in, trying to calm himself, reminding himself that he still had 2 more bars to go to. He decided to walk it, seeing as they were just a couple of blocks away from each other. He crossed the street, taking an unfamiliar route, twisting and turning corners, hoping that he would see someone that would maybe lead him to the nest of the Hwan Clan. 

He heard an unmistakeable shout of, "Leave me alone!" 

Normally, he would ignore these things, letting nature take its course. Jungkook was never one to get involved in other people's business. He didn't care enough. The only people he would actually bother with, were the ones that he held close to his blackened heart. But there was something about this voice...Something familiar. 

He walked closer to the sound, popping the hood of his black jacket up, keeping his head down and blending into the shadows. 

"Where you going pretty?"
"Come on baby, give us some sugar." 
"What's the matter, cotton candy? Too good for us?" 

Cotton candy. 

No. It couldn't be. 

Jimin wouldn't be here so late at night, especially in this part of town. This wasn't a place for someone like Jimin. This was Jungkook's territory. This was the part of town that you didn't come to after dark unless you were either : high, in a gang, or had some sort of protection or status where no one could hurt you.

Jungkook walked closer. He walked close enough that he could see what was going on, and more importantly, who it was that these four drunk bastards were harassing. 

Pink hair. Tears. 

Jimin. 

Jungkook saw red. He wanted nothing more than to pull Jimin close to him and kill those four assholes who dared touch what was his. 

"Leave me alone!" He heard Jimin wail, voice pained and broken, tears falling down his cheeks. 

One of the men moved forward, causing Jimin to stumble back while the other three watched on and laughed. Jungkook was going to make them regret that. He was going to make them regret every single goddamn move that they made. He was going to make sure that they remembered his fists on their faces, the pain that Jungkook caused them for even looking at Jimin. 

He saw the fear in Jimin's eyes as the man moved forward and that was it for him. 

"He said to leave him alone." Jungkook said, hands in his pocket, jaw tight from anger, hood up, raven hair falling over his eyes.

It was like the fire from the anger took over him, only fuelled by Jimin's sobs in the background. All he remembered was the red that he saw. He heard his fists crack down, bare and bloodied on skin. He heard the grunts and the groans from the punches that he threw. Next thing he knew Jimin was tugging at his shirt as Jungkook fumed, standing in front of the man that made Jimin cry. 

He was going to kill him with his fists. 

"Kook." He heard Jimin say softly, pain and terror lacing his voice. He turned around and saw Jimin's hand tugging at his black hoodie, "Please. Let's go." 

God, Jungkook wanted nothing more than to make that man pay. But with the way fear laced every word that Jimin spoke, and the way that he was shivering in the cold, asking Jungkook to leave with tears streaking his cheeks...Jungkook couldn't say no. 

The next thing he knew, Jimin was in his car, shivering in his hoodie that enveloped him. The heat was on high and Jungkook was close to sweating, but none of that mattered. Jimin was cold. He was scared. He was sad. And Jungkook knew that there was more to the reason other than those four men. 

He wanted to ask. He wanted to ask so badly so that he could fix it. So that he could see the smile that he had become so fond. But with the way that Jimin was looking out of the window, trying to will away the tears, face turned away from Jungkook, and the hood up; Jungkook had a feeling that he didn't want to talk about it. But he couldn't stand it. He couldn't stand seeing Jimin sad. 

"Jimin," Jungkook said gently, glancing over at him, taking his eyes off the road for a second. 

Jimin said nothing. 

"Do you want to hear something else I learned in science class?" Jungkook asked, trying to remember what he had read on the multiple websites that he visited and memorised facts off of. 

Jimin said nothing. 

Jungkook took this as his go ahead anyway, attempting to fill up the silence that had engulfed this car so that Jimin wouldn't overthink. 

"Did you know that you burn more calories sleeping than you do watching television?" Jungkook said, glancing over at the pink haired boy, but seeing nothing but the fabric of his hoodie, "Another interesting fact - A crocodile can't stick its tongue out." 

"And that pigs physically cannot look up at the sky!" Jungkook said, remembering another fact. 

He regretted not memorising anymore facts. He was running low and silence was going to return to the car; something that he didn't want.

"Ketchup was used as medicine in the 1930s." Jimin said with a sniffle so softly that Jungkook had almost missed it. 

"Really?" Jungkook asked, more surprised that Jimin actually spoke rather than the fact that ketchup was used to treat diseases. 

"I'm starting to think that you didn't actually learn these in science class," Jimin said, voice hoarse from crying. 

"You can't prove anything," Jungkook said with a smile. 

"Did you look these up?" Jimin asked. 

"I plead the fifth." 

Jimin finally turned to look at him, eyes red rimmed, nose a deep shade of crimson, voice soft and rough as he said, "Thank you, Kookie. Really..." 

"I didn't do anything," Jungkook said. 

"You somehow are always there when I need you and I just..." Jimin said, eyes filling up with tears once again. 

"If I tell you another fact, will you smile?" Jungkook found himself asking. 

"What?" 

"If I tell you a fact, will you smile?" 

"I'll try." Jimin said. 

"What about a joke?" 

"Jungkook..." Jimin trailed off, sighing. 

"A joke it is then!" Jungkook declared, turning into his street, pulling the car over. 

As he turned the engine off, and the lights came back on, Jungkook turned to face Jimin, trying to remember all the lame jokes that Jin had tortured him, Yoongi and Hoseok with. 

"Why do the French eat snails?" Jungkook asked. 

"Uhh, I don't know?" 

"Because they hate fast food." 

It took a second for Jimin to process that lame joke before he smiled. His cheeks chubbed up and he almost facepalmed. But Jungkook didn't care because Jimin was smiling. He had made Jimin smile, and that was the only thing that mattered

"Okay, here's another one!" Jungkook said, smile growing on his face as he watched Jimin closely. 

"Was it as bad as the first?" Jimin asked, smile only growing, eyes puffy from crying.

"Worse." Jungkook warned. 

"I'm ready." 

"What kind of music are balloons afraid of?" 

Jimin waited for the answer. 

"Pop music." 

Jimin giggled, throwing his head back as he broke out into full laughter, Jungkook smiling at the reaction that the lame joke elicited. He made a mental note to pay more attention to Jin when he was telling jokes so that he could tell them to Jimin, and hear him laugh again. This was his new favourite sound. His only favourite sound - The sound of Jimin being happy. 

 

Jungkook would do absolutely anything to see Jimin smile. That was realisation number one.

Jungkook would protect Jimin from absolutely everyone and everything, even if that meant that Jungkook had to put himself in danger. That was realisation number two.

He was sure that this wouldn't be the last of the realisations, especially when it came to the pink haired man that he had come to care and adore for.

And now here he was, glancing into the bedroom every couple of minutes, making sure that Jimin was safe. He remembered the way that he gave Jimin his clothes, how the smile quickly faded away when he was alone, how after an hour of leaving Jimin in his room, he got up to check on him and found fresh tears drying on his cheeks as Jimin fell asleep. That's when he made the decision to leave the door open; just in case Jimin cried again. He wasn't going to let Jimin be alone when he needed someone the most. 

He took one last look at Jimin, to make sure that he was asleep, before switching to the two incognito tabs that he had opened - One was for top 100 Lame Jokes, and the other for Interesting Trivia Facts. He was trying to memorise as many as possible before Jimin woke up, just in case he needed it.  

Jungkook didn't get to go to the other two bars tonight, and he knew that Jin was waiting for an update, but he had nothing to say. He couldn't tell Jin the truth about why he didn't have anything to update him on. He already knew that Jin didn't particularly like or trust Jimin and this would only give him further reason as to why he couldn't. He also knew that looking at jokes and facts wasn't exactly productive research, but it was something he was doing. He would figure out an excuse as to why he didn't have an update later, right now he was learning about how mosquitos kill more humans in a year than any other animal.

Jungkook was memorising his fifth fact about how how water cools down faster than cold water when he heard the rustling of blankets. He stole a quick glance at the bedroom only to find that Jimin was waking up. He quickly switched tabs, from the interesting facts to whatever Jin had sent him about the Hwan Clan. He acted nonchalant, as if nothing bothered him when really he was stealing glances from the corner of his eye at Jimin who had just gotten up, and was rubbing his puffy eyes. 

Jimin looked down at himself, and at the unfamiliar surroundings, a slight panic bubbling up when he suddenly remembered the events that unfolded last night. He let out a small sigh, equally embarrassed and sad. So much happened in such little time, and to top it all off, he had a complete meltdown in front of Jungkook. If that didn't hurt his chances at the story, then nothing really would. How could he let himself slip up like that?! 

He stood up, Jungkook's shirt almost reaching his knees as he shuffled over to beg for an apology from Jungkook and get out of his house as soon as possible. He saw the bedroom door opened and Jungkook who was lying down at the couch, scrolling through his laptop with an incredibly concentrated expression. What was he doing? 

Jimin walked over to Jungkook, clearing his throat. 

"Oh, you're awake?" Jungkook said. 

"Uhh, yeah," Jimin replied, voice still deep from sleep and throat slightly sore from the crying. 

"How are you feeling?" Jungkook asked, sincerely, turning around to face Jimin. 

Jimin was slightly taken back by the sincerity and the care that was in his voice, "Better now, thanks." 

A beat of silence passed before Jimin said. 

"Jungkook, I know I've been saying this a lot, but really, thank you for last night and honestly, without you-" 

"Don't." Jungkook said with a small shake of his head, "Really, Jimin, don't thank me. If it wasn't for you, I would have honestly been in jail for murder."

"What?" 

"I was going to kill him, Jimin." Jungkook said, voice low and serious, "If you hadn't stopped me, I really would have killed him." 

Jungkook's eyes fell on Jimin's wrist, bruises shaped like fingertips littering the area around it. He found himself reaching out, gently taking Jimin's wrist in his grip, fingers ghosting over the bruises, as if his touch could make the purple and blue blots disappear. 

"I'm okay." Jimin said softly. 

"These shouldn't be here." Jungkook said, anger rising back up, "You shouldn't have stopped me." 

"Bruises fade," Jimin said. 

Jungkook didn't like bruises. Not on him, and definitely not on Jimin.

"They'll go away, Jungkook," Jimin said, noticing the way the raven haired man's eyes never moved from the bruises, his thumb gently ghosting over the bruises, "They don't hurt, I promise." 

"They shouldn't be here." 

"It's a lesson." Jimin said with a small, reassuring smile, "It's like an incentive to train harder, so that this never happens again. Next time, I'll be stronger and they won't get the best of me." 

"You should have let me kill him." Jungkook said, finally meeting Jimin's eyes. 

"I'd rather not visit you in jail," Jimin said. 

"I have friends in high places, Jimin," He said, "Jail wouldn't even be an option." 

"Well, it's over now and there's no point in talking about it." Jimin said, snatching his wrist out of Jungkook's grip, his own hand wrapping over the bruises, ignoring the way his skin screamed to be touched by Jungkook again. 

"It doesn't hurt?" Jungkook asked. 

"Not even a little." Jimin lied. 

"Jimin, I-" 

"Hey, how did you take the picture of that guys tattoo?" Jimin asked, eyes falling to the bright screen of the laptop that hosted the cracked skull with a crown adorned on the top, tilted slightly to the right.

"What?" Jungkook asked, head snapping to the laptop. 

"I didn't see you take out your phone last night..." 

"Are you sure that tattoo was on that guy?" Jungkook asked.

"Yeah, I remember seeing it on him. It was on his right arm." 

"How many beads did the crown have?" Jungkook asked. 

"Three." 

"Was it just on him or the other three guys?" 

"It was on all of them," Jimin answered, "What-" 

"Jimin, are you absolutely sure that you saw this exact tattoo on them?" Jungkook asked again.

"Yes. But why?" Jimin asked, "What does the tattoo mean?" 

Jungkook whipped his phone out, needing to text Jin. 

"After last night I'm pretty sure I deserve at least an explanation!" Jimin said, pulling out the guilt card, knowing that it would make Jungkook tell him.

And it did. 

Jungkook put his phone down, not even getting as far as opening the message app. Guilt rushed through him as he looked up at Jimin, eyes immediately falling to his wrists, bruises dark and prominent. 

"Sit down," Jungkook said, "I'll explain everything." 

Jimin sat down on the couch next to him, turning his body to face Jungkook while the raven haired man moved the laptop to the coffee table in front of him. 

"The Kim Clan isn't the only gang in town." Jungkook started off. "There are others. There are smaller ones, and ones that are just starting out; There are clans as powerful, and many that are weaker. But there are others. The Kim Clan is one of the biggest, and most powerful gangs in town. And it's biggest rival is the Hwan Clan." 

"...The tattoo?" Jimin asked, only now realising just how much danger he was in last night. 

"The tattoo is a symbol of the Hwan Clan. Once you get that, you can never get out. The more number of beads on the crown, the higher your ranks in the gang." Jungkook said, "The Kim's have their own tattoo as well. It's a symbol of loyalty. Every gang has their own and they treat it very, very seriously. If you ever betray the gang, the first thing they would do is carve the tattoo out of your skin."

"Like a pound of flesh..." Jimin muttered, "I'm sure Shakespeare would be proud, but what does the Hwan Clan want?" 

"The rivalry between the Kim Clan and the Hwan Clan dates back years. Even before Jin took over for his father," Jungkook explained, "When Jin's father died, everyone thought that the leader of the Hwan Clan did it, but he didn't. He actually helped Jin find the murderer and that was that. From that day on, the Hwan Clan and the Kim Clan set out a peace treaty of sorts. But lately, things have...Well, let's just say that tensions are on the rise and the treaty is starting to break down." 

"Why?" 

"The person who stabbed Hoseok was from the Hwan Clan." Jungkook said, "And we found out that the new leader of the Clan, Jaehwan, had ordered a hit on someone in the gang, and we don't know who. Hoseok was just collateral damage." 

"So...last night..." 

"They weren't out to get you," Jungkook said with a shake of his head, "They don't know that you're in the gym." 

"I'm sure they do now." Jimin said, "What with you saving me and all." 

"They were probably too drunk to remember anything," Jungkook said, "Plus, who would believe them anyway. I have a reputation and all." 

"Oh, I'm aware," Jimin mumbled, "Unbeatable JK." 

"That and more," Jungkook said with a smirk. 

"Can I ask you something?" 

"Never thought of you as the person to ask permission, but yeah, shoot." 

"You said that every clan has a tattoo," Jimin said, "Why don't you?" 

"Think of me like an honorary member of the gang," Jungkook said, "I'm still part of it, like everyone knows me as a part of the Kim Clan, and I do help out with things that Jin or anyone else needs. But, I'm not, well I guess you could call it, 'fully inducted' yet."  

"Is there even an induction?" 

"Of sorts." 

"And Yoongi, and Hoseok and Jin all did it?" Jimin asked. 

"Jin's one was a little more different than ours what with him being the leader and all, but yes, we were all inducted." 

"So they all have tattoos except for you?" Jimin asked. 

"Every one." 

"What is the Kim's tattoo anyway?" 

"A dagger with a cobra slithered around it, and a KC at the hilt." Jungkook answered. 

"Do all tattoos have to be on the same place?" 

"What?" 

"All the men I saw yesterday had their tattoos on their right arm," Jimin explained, "So, do all the tattoos for every clan have to be at the same place?" 

"No." Jungkook said with a shake of his head, "Doesn't matter where it is as long as you have it. But I think I know why they chose it there." 

"Why?" 

"If they happened to have pissed off their leader, or betrayed their gang in any way...The pound of flesh would hurt less." Jungkook said.

"O-Oh." Jimin stuttered out. 

"Are your 20 questions done, or do you have any more?" Jungkook asked with an amused smile. 

"One more." 

"What is it?" 

"Will Jin get mad that you told me?" Jimin asked. 

"He knows that you know." Jungkook said, "I told him yesterday." 

"And?" 

"It'll take some time for him to trust you but that isn't your fault. Jin is just skeptical of people in general. But once he gets to know you, he'll be the best friend you'll ever have," Jungkook said. 

"I'm starting to think that best friends don't exist," Jimin mumbled to himself, Taehyung crossing his mind. 

"Can I ask you a question now?" Jungkook asked, noticing the change in expression. 

"It's only fair." Jimin said, shifting in his seat.

"What happened last night?" Jungkook said, "And why were you in that part of town anyway?"

"I went to meet with Tae." 

"Your best friend?" Jungkook asked. 

"I'm not sure what we are anymore," Jimin said, with a sad smile. 

"Do you want to talk about it?" Jungkook asked softly. 

Jimin's first instinct was to say no. His first instinct was to just run. This wasn't part of the plan. The plan was to find out as much information about the underground as possible, and he already had a lot to work with. If he wanted, he could just go home right now, write everything he knew and publish the work. 

But he didn't. He found himself not wanting to move from the couch. 

Really, he just wanted to move closer to Jungkook. Being here, with him, knowing that Jungkook wanted to protect him, and seeing the soft look in his eyes....

"Yes." Jimin found himself saying, "I do." 

"We have all night," Jungkook told him with a soft smile.

God, what was wrong with him?! Jungkook was never this soft! But looking at the pink haired boy now, he wanted nothing more than to hold him and tell him that everything was going to be alright. He wanted to listen to his problems and be there for him. There was something about Park Jimin that would make him move mountains, and go to the ends of the earth if it meant that he would never have to see tears in his eyes again. 

"Long story short - I met up with Tae last night down by a bar near 57th. I thought that we were going to talk it out and basically put everything behind us...But that didn't happen," Jimin said with a scoff, "It just got really ugly, really fast. He said some...really, really hurtful things and I just couldn't be there anymore. So I left. I guess I was so into my head because the next thing I know I was being catcalled by some drunk guy and his friends. Honestly, it was just so many things at once and I think that's why I just broke down." 

"You don't have to be strong all the time, you know," Jungkook said. 

"That's coming from you?" Jimin said, a little laugh escaping him. 

"I have my moments," Jungkook said. 

"So, Dr. Phil, what do you think I should do?" Jimin said with a soft sigh. 

"He's your best friend for a reason," Jungkook told him, "I'm sure neither one of you want to lose that frirndship. Sure, things have been said, but it's coming from a place of love. No best friend would wish ill intent upon their friend, and I'm sure Tae doesn't want that for you. If anything, he was probably looking out for you. His words just didn't come out right. Don't give up on him, and definitely don't give up on your friendship." 

"That was..." Jimin said trailing off, trying to find the right words, "Oddly deep." 

"Were you expecting something else?" 

"A little, yeah." Jimin said, "It's just you know...You're in a gang and you box, and you have this whole bad boy thing going for you. I wasn't expecting an actual Dr. Phil speech."

"Have you ever watched Shrek?" Jungkook asked.

"Who hasn't watched Shrek?" 

"Well, think of me as Shrek." 

"...You want me to think of you as an ogre?" Jimin questioned, "Is this some kind of weird kink of yours or-" 

"No! I meant that I have layers! Just like Shrek does!" Jungkook said, rolling his eyes.

"Back in my day people just had normal kinks," Jimin teased. 

"Shrek is not my kink!" 

"Is this your swamp? Are you going to tell me to get out of it?" Jimin teased further, "Oh, is this roleplay just doing it for you, Mr. Shrek? "

"I have never regretted a decision more in my life," Jungkook mumbled.

"Should I be donkey? Or Fiona?" 

"Donkey. 'Cause you're an ass." 

Jimin giggled before bursting out into a full blown laugh, throwing his head back, pink hair splaying on the soft couch. Jungkook couldn't help but smile at him. 

And that's when Jungkook came to realisation number three. 

If he was going to be soft for anyone, it would only be Park Jimin. His Jimin. 

 

~~~

 

Jin was sat in Yoongi's office with Hoseok beside him and Yoongi on the computer in front of him. 

"It's almost noon," Jin said, leaning back against the chair with his phone out on his lap, "Where's Jungkook? He never misses training." 

"He'll make it up later," Yoongi said, not taking his eyes off the screen, scrolling through the documents that he had to explain to Jin, "He said something came up." 

"With Jimin I'm sure," Jin muttered, almost scoffing. 

"Now, now, Jin," Hoseok said with a cheeky smile, "You told Jungkook that you would give him a chance." 

"What?" 

"You said that you would give Jimin a chance," Hoseok repeated, "You know, after he told you that Jimin knows about the gang." 

"How the hell do you know that?" Jin asked. 

"Jungkook never keeps anything from me," Yoongi piped in, a smile growing on his face. 

"And Yoongi tells me everything," Hoseok said, holding his hand out to Yoongi who high fived it. 

"You guys are disgusting." Jin said, scrunching his face.

"You're just jealous." Hoseok said. 

"Of what? I have my own boyfriend," Jin told them. 

"And what if one of us didn't like him? How would you feel then?" Hoseok said, more than he asked. 

"This is different." Jin insisted. 

"How so?" 

"Jimin isn't dating Jungkook. I'm dating Namjoon." 

"And what if they do get together? I mean, you've seen the way that they're constantly around each other, don't you?" Yoongi said

Hoseok added, "I've only met them once and I can already tell how different Jungkook is with him." 

"All I'm saying is that, we don't know Jimin that well." Jin said. 

"We know Jimin more than we know Namjoon," Yoongi pointed out. 

A beat of silence passed between them before Jin let out a sigh. 

"Fine." He succumbed, rolling his eyes, "I'll ease up on Jimin. I'll give him a chance." 

"Now, was that so hard, Jinnie?" Hoseok cooed. 

"I genuinely hate you." Jin said. 

"Says the one who almost cried when he saw me in the hospital two days ago." 

"Shut up." Jin mumbled, checking his phone, ears heating up from embarrassment. 

"Can we get back to work now?" Yoongi asked. 

"Why is it that you always want to do work in your office?" Hoseok said. 

"It's an office, 'Seok." Yoongi deadpanned, "What else am I going to do?" 

"Me." Hoseok suggested. 

"Oh? I mean if you want we could-" 

"Can this wait?!" Jin almost yelled, "Jesus christ! You guys are-" 

A ping from his phone broke his words, as his eyes travelled down to read the message. He went silent, focusing on the message and the message only.

"Jin, what's wrong?" Yoongi asked, sensing the tension. 

"I have to go." He said, standing up. 

"What? What is it?" Yoongi asked. 

"Nothing." He said. 

"Jin." Yoongi said, more serious now. 

"A couple of days ago, I found this lead," Jin told him, "And I gave it to Jungkook to track down." 

"He didn't tell me anything about a lead..." Yoongi said, trailing off. 

"I told him not to." Jin confessed, "You had Hobi to worry about and I didn't want your hopes raised." 

Yoongi's jaw became taut. 

"Kook's a good kid. He didn't want to lie to you and he said that if you asked him anything about it, he would confess straight away," Jin told him. 

"So what? Did he find anything?" Hoseok asked. 

Jin nodded, "It also has to do with why he's late." 

"Is he hurt?" 

"No." 

"Where is he?"  Yoongi asked. 

"At home." Jin answered, adding, "With Jimin." 

"Jimin?" Hoseok asked. 

"Look, call Kook. Let him explain." Jin said, walking to the door, "I have to go." 

"I'm coming with," Hoseok said, standing up. 

"No." Jin said immediately, "You literally just got out of the hospital not even 24 hours ago! There is no way in hell-" 

"There's not going to be any fight considering the fact that you're going alone," Hoseok told him, "You're not even carrying your gun with you!" 

"Hobi, no!" 

"I'm going and that's that." Hoseok relented, "I'm not your right hand man for nothing, Kim Seokjin." 

Jin looked over Hoseok's shoulder at Yoongi, as if asking for permission.

"Hobi..." Yoongi said softly, trailing off. 

"I'm going to be fine," Hoseok said, turning to face him, "We're just going to check on a lead." 

"You don't even know what it is!" Jin scoffed. 

"What is it then? Where are you going?" Hoseok asked. 

"To Jaehwan." Jin said. 

A tense silence engulfed the room. 

"Still wanna come?" Jin asked. 

"Ever know me to back down from a fight?" 

Jin sighed, nodding in approval. He then turned to Yoongi. 

"If you don't hear from us in two hours - Call Jungkook. Tell him we're in trouble."

 

~~~

 

Jin pulled over one street away, killing the engine of the car as he stared at Hoseok. 

"Not too late to back out now." Jin said. 

"I didn't become your right hand by backing down from anything." Hoseok replied cockily. 

"You sure about this?" Jin asked, one last time, "Your wounds aren't fully healed yet." 

"I got the stitches days ago, Jin!" 

"You got out of the hospital yesterday, Hobi!" 

"We're wasting time." Hoseok said, "Are we going, or not?" 

Jin reached over to the glove compartment, pulling out a knife and a small gun, "Take your pick." 

"I'm a sadistic bitch," Hoseok said with a grin and he took the knife that was sheathed in its holder and stuck it in his sock, carefully. 

"That's what Yoongi tells me, anyway," Jin muttered, pocketing the gun. 

"He talks about our sex life?" Hoseok asked. 

"I regret learning how to speak and understand language," Jin mumbled as he got out of the car, "I really do." 

"Wait, Jin!" Hoseok said, getting out as well, "What does he say about our sex life? Because, there's this one thing I really want to try out on him but I'm not so sure-" 

"Hobi! Do I look like the person to go to about this?!" Jin asked. 

"True..." Hoseok said, trailing off, "This is not a conversation meant for bottoms." 

"Bottom!" Jin gasped, "I am not a bottom!" 

"Yeah sure, and I don't have a daddy kink," Hoseok scoffed, "It's time to stop lying to ourselves, Jin."

"I will have you know that Namjoon and I-" 

"Shhh, Jin! We're on a mission! Concentrate!" Hoseok said, a mischievous glint in his eye as he walked in front of Jin. 

"You're going the wrong way, asshole!" 

"That's what he said," Hoseok said with a cheeky grin as he followed behind Jin. 

"This conversation is not over!" 

"You sound like Yoongi when he's being a brat," Hoseok commented. 

"I did not need to know that." 

"Oh if this conversation is not over, you better get used to it." 

They started to walk with Jin leading the way, only having vague directions in his head about where this Hwan infested nest might be. 

"Is-Is that dried blood on the floor?" Hoseok asked, squinting at the dark brown splatters that stained the light grey pavement. 

"This is definitely the place," Jin said, eyes immediately scanning the area. 

"Let's go then." Hoseok said, walking towards the entrance, but Jin pulled him back. 

"'Seok." 

"What?" 

"Listen," Jin said, voice low and serious. Hoseok knew he wasn't playing. All jokes immediately went out the window, as if a switch had just been pushed. 

"What is it?" 

"If anything happens, and I mean anything...You run. Run as fast as you can and get the hell away from this place." Jin said, putting the keys in his hand, "Don't worry about me, okay? Just run." 

Hoseok looked as though he was going to protest, but Jin cut him off before he could. 

"It's an order." He said, voice steely, dripping with authority.

Hoseok clenched his fist around the keys, pocketing them, hyperaware of how the knife holder in his sock was lightly scratching his ankle with every step that he took as he entered the bar, next to Jin. 

Soft music played as the scent of hard whiskey and cigarettes wafted through the air. The bar was mostly wood, lit up brighter than it usually would than if it were night time. Hoseok could see the people here, all having their tattoos proudly displayed, different beads on the crown, some not even having any beads. And then there was Hoseok. The cobra slithered around the knife with the bold lettering of KC at the hilt of the dagger was on his forearm, unmissable. 

"Well, well, well," A voice boomed, silencing the bar almost immediately, "If it isn't my good friend, Kim Seokjin, with his lackey." 

"Jaehwan." Jin greeted curtly. 

"To what do I owe this pleasure?" Jaehwan said, more than he asked, walking towards them with a glass of neat whiskey in one hand, and a half smoked cigarette in the other. His white shirt was tucked into torn jeans, a brown designer belt holding the whole thing together. He stubbed out the cigarette on the wood of one of the tables, tossing it carelessly as he took a sip of his drink, the fully designed crown tattoo peeking out from his white shirt, along with the faint outline of the skull.

"Can't a friend come and visit?" Jin said. 

"Of course you can! You're always welcomed here!" Jaehwan said, now standing in front of them. 

He was shorter than both Jin and Hoseok, but he carried himself in such a way that he was almost as tall as them. What he lacked for in height, he made up with his muscles. His biceps were potruding out of the white shirt, almost too tight on him, showing off his best features. His dark brown hair was parted to one side, wisps of hair falling over his forehead, almost getting into his eyes, but never really reaching it. 

"So, what can I get you two?" He asked, taking another sip, a bigger one, of his whiskey. 

"We're good. Thanks." Jin said curtly. 

"What? No drinks?" 

"A bit early don't you think, Hwan?" Jin asked. 

"It's never too early for a good whiskey, Jin," He said, "Didn't your father ever teach you that?" 

Jin sucked in a sharp breath, his jaw almost immediately locking itself in place. 

"So, if you're not here for a drink, what exactly are you here for?" Jaehwan said with a smile, knowing he had the upper hand. After all, they were on his turf.

"I'm here to ask you to keep an eye on your little mutts." Jin almost spat, his patience almost wearing itself out, taking a big hit after that jab about his father. 

"What now?" He asked, almost exasperated. 

"Let's just say that if one more of your little mutts attack any and I mean any of my members again..." Jin said trailing off, "Let's just say that I would be shipping pieces of them to you for a very long time." 

"My, oh my, how Kim Seokjin has changed," Jaehwan said, "I'm almost impressed." 

"We still have a treaty, Hwan." Jin reminded, "I can't be the only one keeping up my end of the deal." 

"Tell you what, Jin," Jaehwan said, "Let's up the ante a little, shall we?" 

"What?" 

"Oh come on, you can't be serious," He said, "Neither one of us has been keeping to the treaty, now have we?" 

"I know that I have." 

"That's bullshit and you know it." Jaehwan deadpanned, "Don't make me remind you about the drugs that you sold on my turf, and the fact that you've been poaching my members."

"I haven't done shit, Hwan!" Jin almost screamed. 

"Tell that to the twenty new recruits that you got three months ago, and the millions I could have made off those drug sales, Kim!" 

"Not my fault that your gang is shit and that my drugs are purer, asshole." Jin said through gritted teeth. 

"Let's settle this once and for all then - One of your men, against one of mine. Fight night. Three weeks from now." Jaehwan said. 

"What are we betting on?" 

"The treaty's off and winner gets all." Jaehwan said, a glint in his eye. 

"All, as in-" 

"The gang, the members, the money, the drugs....Everything." 

"No way in hell!" Jin almost screamed. 

"Scared, you'll lose, Kim?" He provoked. 

"The treaty's been off for a while and we both know it, Hwan." Jin growled out. 

"Then we bet on the gangs then." He said, "If you win, you get my empire, and if I win, I get yours." 

"Jin..." Hoseok mumbled out beside him. 

"We need rules." Jin said, considering the options. 

"You really are your father's son..." Jaehwan muttered. 

"Wish I could say the same, bastard." Jin spat, venom dripping from his words. 

"What are your rules, then?" He said, ignoring that comment. 

"Number one - No foul play." 

"Done." He said. 

"Number two - I name the time and place of the fight." 

"Three - No home ground." Jaehwan said immediately. 

"That goes for you too!" Jin warned. 

"Four - We play three rounds." Jaehwan said. 

"Five - From now until the fight, the treaty is on. That means, peace between both of our gangs and that goes for your filthy mutts as well. Any of my members get hurt, this whole thing is off." Jin said. 

"Consider it done." Jaehwan said, extending his hand, "Deal?"

"Deal." 

"It's always a pleasure doing business with you, Kim." Jaehwan said with a smirk. 

Jin nudged Hoseok lightly, telling him that it was time to leave. 

"Oh and, Jin?" 

"What now?" 

"You might want to take a look at tomorrow's main event against your boy JK," He teased, "Think of the fight as a little teaser as to what's to come." 

Jin almost growled, hands clenched into fists on his sides as he pulled the door opened so roughly, it almost came off its hinges, closing with a thud. 

Jaehwan grinned victoriously, downing the rest of the amber liquid, the burn so delicious in his throat. 

"You were right." 

"I'm right about many things," He said, placing the now empty glass onto the bar counter, "That's how I became head of the gang." 

"I meant that you were right about Jin coming here," Kang, his right hand man said. 

"Yeah well, what did you expect when you hire someone like the Archer to carry out a hit on his gang, and most of all on his right hand man," Jaehwan said with a sigh. 

"Weren't you aiming for JK?" 

"Either one would have worked, didn't matter to me, as long as it was someone close to them," He said, brushing off the comment, "Speaking of, did you find out anything about the gang? Any weak spots? Any Achilles Heels?" 

"Four of the members said that JK beat them up last night." 

"What? Why?" 

"He was protecting someone, apparently," Kang said with a shrug, "Couldn't really get much out of them considering how much pain medication they're on." 

"Find out as much about it as possible," Jaehwan said, "I want them on their knees begging me to even let him keep the shirt on their backs by the time I'm done with him."

 

Chapter Text

Jimin was sat next to Jungkook on the bleachers, opposite Yoongi was perched on the edge of the boxing rink, waiting in silence. 

"...What are we doing here?" Jimin asked, cautiously, breaking the silence, not wanting to say the wrong thing. 

"Hobi sent us a message to be at the gym," Yoongi answered. 

"Sounded serious." Jungkook added, leaning back on the wood, "He didn't even use any emoji's." 

"I, uhh-" Jimin stuttered, "I don't think I should be here. It seems like a gang meeting and I don't-" 

"You may not be part of the gang but that doesn't mean you're any less family than either one of us," Yoongi said, trying to sound nonchalant but the meaning behind his words was clear. 

It was times like this that Jimin felt more guilt than he should. This was only meant to be an undercover job, yet he had gotten attached so quickly to the people in this room. More than he wanted to admit. More than that, he didn't want to admit that he had felt something for Jungkook. Every time he would look at the raven haired man, his skin would yearn to be touched, his eyes automatically drifted down to his lips and he wanted nothing more than to feel the soft, plump lips searing into him. He wanted each inch of his skin to burn, to bruise, to be touched only by him. But it was more than just physical attraction. And that was what scared Jimin the most. It was the fact that Jungkook trusted him. He trusted Jimin enough to open up, to be there whenever he needed him, to break down some of the walls that he had up the first time Jimin saw him. He trusted Jimin enough to let him into his house and protect him from whatever was lurking in the streets. He trusted Jimin enough to tell him about the gang even though he knew that he shouldn't.

He trusted Jimin and Jimin had already broken that trust. From the first moment that they said hello.

Both Jungkook and Yoongi were oblivious to the internal war that Jimin was going through, choosing instead to hypothesise about why Hoseok had sent out that message. 

"What do you think it is?" Jungkook asked, leaning forward, curious. 

"They went to Jaehwan," Yoongi told him, "Do you think something happened?" 

"Couldn't have been anything bad," Jungkook said, "If it was, Hobi would have called for backup immediately." 

"What if-" Yoongi started to say but got cut off by loud screeching tires followed by a loud slam of a door. 

"It's them." Jungkook said, waiting for the sound of the front doors to creak indicating that they had arrived. But instead of that, they were greeted by a loud, booming scream. 

"Someone talk some fucking sense into him!" Hoseok screamed, his loud booming voice echoing, bouncing off the walls as he pushed the doors with all his force, making it creak, almost falling off its hinges.

Jin was quiet as he trailed behind Hoseok at a small distance, giving him some space.

"Hobi!" Yoongi called out, a mix of surprise and disbelief in his voice. 

Jimin couldn't have been more shocked. This Hoseok in front of him was a complete 180 from the one he saw last night. The Hoseok from last night was a bright presence in the dark gym, lighting the whole place up with a simple smile. But the Hoseok right here...He was scary. His jaw was taut, fire burning in his eyes, fists clenched so tightly by his side that Jimin was sure that there were crescent marks imprinted in his palms. 

Jimin didn't realise how he unconsciously shifted towards Jungkook, heart beating faster in his chest. He didn't realise until he felt Jungkook's warm hand on his thigh, patting it reassuringly, as if saying that no matter how angry Hoseok was, they were safe in this gym. They were still safe. Hoseok would never harm them because family doesn't hurt each other. 

"Hobi," Yoongi said, standing up and walking slowly towards him, "What happened?" 

"Ask him!" Hoseok shouted, pointing accusingly at Jin, fuming. 

Jin stood there, calmly, not saying a word. 

They turned to him, waiting for answers. 

"Well?" Jungkook prompted. 

"I met with Jaehwan." Jin said. 

"And?" 

"And we came to an agreement," Jin said calmly. 

"Agreement?!" Hoseok yelled in disbelief, scoffing, "An agreement is the farthest thing you-" 

"Hobi." Yoongi interjected, shooting him a look, "Let Jin talk. We can discuss this later." 

"Go ahead, Jin! Tell them what you did!" Hoseok said, ignoring Yoongi, too angry to think straight.  

"Jaehwan and I agreed that the treaty was basically useless seeing as neither one of us was really keeping to our agreements. So, we came up with a...solution," Jin explained, "We said that we would host a fight night, three weeks from now." 

"Tell them what's on the line." Hoseok demanded, "Tell them what you agreed to." 

"If I win, I get the Hwan clan. The whole thing." Jin said, watching their eyes widen as they fully understood. 

"What happens if you lose?" Jimin asked, almost meekly.

"Jaehwan gets the Kim clan, doesn't he?" Jungkook answered, "The entire empire." 

Jin nodded. 

"Do you understand why I'm so fucking pissed off now?!" Hoseok said. 

"Jin..." Was all Yoongi could manage to say. 

"There are terms though," Jin told them, "Things that might help." 

"Oh please!" Hoseok scoffed, "If Jaehwan couldn't keep to fucking treaty terms what makes you think that he would honour your stupid little rules." 

"You were there, weren't you? You saw how much the Kim Clan meant to him. You know as well as I do that if he even comes close to breaking the terms, this entire thing is off!" Jin countered, patience wearing thin.

"What are the terms?" Yoongi asked. 

"No foul play. No home ground. Best of three. I get to choose the time and place but it has to be in three weeks," Jin listed, "And from now till the fight the treaty has to be strictly followed." 

"So we're safe then?" Jimin asked. 

"Not exactly," Jungkook answered, "The terms of the treaty bind only the Kim Clan and the Hwan Clan." 

"That was what I didn't account for," Jin said. 

"What does that mean?" Jimin asked, not understanding. 

"Think of gang leaders like lawyers - Cunning and always looking for loopholes." Jungkook explained.

"Just because they can't cause trouble, doesn't mean that they won't get other people to cause trouble," Yoongi said. 

Hoseok shook his head, still in disbelief, "Why did you do it, Jin?" 

"You were there! You saw what he was capable of!" Jin yelled, "You almost died, Hobi! There is an attack out on god knows who in our gang and if I can't protect you-" 

"I can protect myself!" 

"Tell that to the stab wound on your fucking torso!" Jin yelled, chest heaving from the sheer amount of emotion. 

His voice echoed back into a silent gym. 

With a shuddering breath, Jin spoke softer now, "If I can't protect my family, I don't deserve to protect anyone..." 

"And you think giving him the gang is protecting us?" Hoseok said. 

"I think that fighting for us is protecting us." 

"There's no point in fighting now. A deal is a deal." Jungkook said, standing up and walking towards the three boys, leaving Jimin sitting alone, "Fight night is three weeks away. The best thing we can do now is train and train and train. We're not going to lose." 

"There's something else," Jin said, wincing. 

"What?" 

"There's a fight tomorrow," Jin said, "And you're going up against one of Jaehwan's men." 

"He called it a taster fight," Hoseok elaborated. 

"Then I'll fight." Jungkook said as if it was the most obvious thing. 

"Kook, I don't think-" 

"I'm fighting. End of discussion." Jungkook said, crossing his arms over his chest as he leaned against the ring post. 

Yoongi glanced over at Hoseok who looked like he was about to blow his top at any moment. Hoseok didn't get angry very often. It was a rare ocassion. A very rare one. But when he did, it would usually take him an incredibly long time to calm down, and right now wasn't a moment where Hoseok could release his rage. Especially with those stitches in. An angry Hoseok was a scary Hoseok, and only a handful of people could calm him down. 

"Okay, let's all just take a moment," Yoongi said, "Whatever happened, happened. And right now all we can do is deal with it." 

Jimin watched on silently from the bleachers. 

He watched as Hoseok fumed, trying to reel his anger in; the sunshine personality long gone. The happiness now replaced with a dark and red aura around him. 

He watched as Yoongi tried to act as the mediator in the scenario, taking into account everyone's feelings, trying to calm the situation down. 

He watched as Jungkook tried to act fearless, as he 'volunteered' for the fight while already knowing that he was the one that they were all counting on. Jimin knew him well enough to know that the only reason Jungkook volunteered was for the benefit of the other boys. He knew that they didn't want to make the decision for him, but they also knew that he was the best of the best. After all, he was the Unbeatable JK. They needed him and he didn't want to let them down. Jungkook never wanted to admit it, but he cared about them more than he lets on. 

He watched as Jin stood quietly, letting all of them process their own emotions. Jimin respected Jin at this point. He respected how Jin cared enough about them not to assert his dominance as the gang leader right now. He respected the fact that not once did Jin raise his voice despite the fact that Hoseok was tearing into him. Jin seemed calm. Whether or not he was, Jimin didn't know, but the aura and the fact that he was so put together in the middle of what Jimin could only assume was a shit storm, really impressed him. 

Despite the screaming and the arguing, Jimin could tell that this was a family. A real family. One where opinions were respected and different views were listened to. This was a place of comfort and one where no one was judged. Opinions may differ, and different approaches might be taken, but at the end of the day, everyone was heard and everyone was respected. This was a family. This is a family. 

"Look, we can't change what happened, but we can control what we're going to do about it," Yoongi said, standing in the middle of the room, looking around, "We have to come up with a plan." 

"I don't think any of us are in the right headspace to do that right now," Jin said, "We'll talk about it when we've all taken a breath." 

Hoseok just shook his head, tongue in his cheek as he stormed off through the back door. 

"Jin..." Yoongi said, trailing off. 

"I'll come back later." Jin said, looking down at his buzzing phone, "I have to take this." 

Yoongi looked over at Jimin and Jungkook with his hands on his hips as he watched Jin walk out with a creak of the door and phone to his ear.

"What do you think?" He asked. 

"I think that I have to up training," Jungkook responded, seeming calm and collected. 

"Are you alright to fight?" 

"I'm not called Unbeatable for nothing, Yoongi." Jungkook responded. 

"What about you?" Yoongi asked, turning to Jimin. 

"Me?" 

"Yeah. What do you think?" 

"I don't know," Jimin answered. 

"No opinions at all?" 

"I think that I don't have enough facts and background to make an informed and opinionated decision." Jimin answered.

"I know that you know about the gang, Jimin," Yoongi said, "It's okay to tell me what you think." 

"I'm not afraid to tell you what i think," Jimin said, "I just don't think that I have enough about the Hwan Clan or even Jin's gang to say anything. I don't know about the treaty.... I just can't make a comment without all the facts." 

"You're part of the family now, Jimin," Yoongi said, "And that means that whenever you're ready, you can know anything and everything that you want. We trust you." 

There it was again. That guilt. 

Jimin smiled at Yoongi, trying to ignore the shitty way that he felt about himself. Gang or no gang, this was a family. A family built on trust. And Jimin was breaking that trust every single time he stepped foot in there. 

"Thanks, Yoongi." Was all Jimin could say, bile rising up in his throat, but he subdued it.

"Oh, and Jimin," Yoongi said, pausing mid-step as he made his way into his office. 

"Yeah?" 

"I heard about what happened with the rival gang," He said, "I'm sorry that it happened to you. I want you to know that the gym is always open, no matter what time of the day it is, okay? You're safe here. You know the passwords and where the keys are kept. Come whenever you want." 

"Thank you," Jimin said, eyes wide with sincerity. 

"I'll be in my office." Yoongi said to no one in particular as he entered his office, turning the light on and closing the door behind him.

It was as if Jungkook waited for the door to close before he slumped down the post, his facade almost dropping immediately. 

"Shouldn't someone talk to Hoseok?" Jimin asked, looking at the back door rather than at Jungkook. 

"Hobi doesn't get mad very often, but when he does, it's best to leave him alone for a bit while he sorts out his emotions." Jungkook answered, sitting at the edge of the boxing ring. 

Jimin stood up, walking towards him and sat down next to him. 

"You okay?" He asked. 

"Fine." Jungkook said. 

"So that fight..." Jimin said, trailing off. 

"What about it?" 

"Must be a lot of pressure."

"I can handle pressure," Jungkook told him. 

"No one said you couldn't," Jimin said, looking over at him, "The Unbeatable JK...That's quite a title to carry around." 

Jungkook just looked at him, wordlessly, eyes blank, face stoic. 

"It's weird isn't it?" Jimin said, "How Unbeatable is both a burden and a badge of pride? On one hand, you can go around saying how you're the big bad Unbeatable JK, the one who no one could defeat, but on the other hand, the struggle of having to keep such a title...The amount of hours that go into the training, the fact that people are constantly challenging you to be the one person who could take down this Unbeatable JK..." 

"What's your point, Jimin?" Jungkook asked with a sigh. 

"My point is that, I hope you know that even if you lose a fight, it isn't going to be the end of the world. I know that you think that all of these people, especially Yoongi, Hoseok and Jin are counting on you. And I know that you think that you're the only person who can fight this fight for them. But, I need you to know that even if you don't want to, they'll still love you." Jimin told him with a small smile, "Regardless of what happens, they'll always be there for you. And they know that you'll be there for them too."

Jimin hopped off the edge of the ring, smiling softly at Jungkook who couldn't take his eyes off of him. 

"I'll see you later, Kookie," Jimin said, fond smile on his face, "This list that Yoongi gave me isn't going to finish itself."

Jungkook nodded, almost unable to talk, so mesmerised with how in tune Jimin was with his emotions despite knowing him for only a short period of time. He watched as Jimin ran his hand through his soft, bubble gum hair as he exited the gym and he kept looking at the door as if he would walk back. 

"Kook! Can you come in here for a second?" He heard Yoongi scream from his office.

Jungkook bit on his bottom lip, almost nervously as he walked towards Yoongi's office, entering it without saying a word, plopping himself in the seat, so deep in thought that he didn't even notice Yoongi looking at him with a cocked eyebrow. 

"You okay, kid?" Yoongi asked, glasses on the edge of his nose with paperwork sprawled out in front of him, noticing the look on his face. It was times like these that Yoongi forgot that Jungkook was a boxer that was also part of a gang. It was times like these that Jungkook just looked like a normal boy, almost like a child with his wide eyes and button nose.

"Fine." Jungkook answered, a far away look in his eyes.

"We need to talk about something," Yoongi said. 

"What?" 

Yoongi took his glasses off, setting on top of some papers, "I thought that we didn't hide anything from each other." 

"We don't." 

"Then why did I not know about the lead that Jin gave you to follow," Yoongi said, a slight accusatory tone in his voice.

Jungkook sighed, "Yoongi, you were busy with Hobi and the hospital and I didn't want you to have something else to worry about; especially with the amount you have on your plate already." 

Yoongi sighed, knowing where the younger boy was coming from, "Kook, I don't want you to worry about what's on my plate or not. I've been there for you since you were a kid, and I'm going to be here when you're old and withered." 

"You'll be dead, Yoongi," Jungkook joked, a smile forming on his face. 

"Shut up, brat!" Yoongi said, "I'm trying to be sentimental." 

"I know what you want to say," Jungkook said, "That I should tell you everything no matter what." 

"Yeah, you should," Yoongi told him. 

"I won't hide anything from you," Jungkook said.

"Good." Yoongi said with a nod, picking up his glasses and sliding it onto his face as he got ready to get back to work. 

Jungkook sat there with a far away look in his eyes. 

"You okay, kid?" Yoongi asked. 

"Fine." Jungkook said, deep in thought.

Yoongi wanted to ask, but knew better. He knew that if Jungkook actually wanted to open up to him, he would. He didn't push him all of these years , and he wasn't going to start now. Jungkook had his emotions locked in a steel vault, with only him knowing the passcode. So, Yoongi kept quiet and continued to do his work, occasionally glancing over at Jungkook who had a small scowl on his face, as if coming to terms with something. 

"Hey, Yoongi," Jungkook said, finally breaking the silence.

"Hmm?" He hummed in response, eyes not leaving his paperwork.

"Do you remember that game we used to play, where we each asked each other a question, got honest answers and there were no follow up questions?" Jungkook said, words tumbling out of his mouth quickly. 

"What? No!" Yoongi said, shaking his head, looking up at Jungkook questioningly, "We've never played that before!"

"Oh..." Jungkook said, pausing, before quickly saying, "So, I have a game we can play! Here are the rules: We-" 

"I get it!" Yoongi said, rolling his eyes, "Question. Honest answer. No follow up questions." 

"Great so I don't have to explain the rules then," Jungkook said, "I'll go first!" 

Yoongi sighed but nodded, putting his pen down, letting the younger ask whatever question he wanted to. 

"How did you know you liked Hoseok?" Jungkook asked, voice small, almost as if he was scared of hearing the answer himself.

"Well," Yoongi said, trying not to show how taken aback he was with the question, "It started out small. Like how, I would smile every time he entered the room. Or how when he would leave, I would stare at the door, waiting for him to come back. It was more than just physical attraction. Sure, Hoseok is gorgeous, but there was something about him that I just....loved. It was the way he could light up the room by just being in it, and how he made me feel. He was light. He was funny. He was everything I wanted but never knew I needed until he showed up. I had never felt that way about anyone before Hoseok and until now, the only person who can get my heart beating really, really fast, is him."

Jungkook was frozen. Every single thing that Yoongi was saying related to him. Jimin was light. Jimin made him laugh. Jimin made him feel like no one ever has. In all of his years of fooling around, never once did someone make him skin sing, or burn, or yearn for soft gentle touches like it did with Jimin. Jimin was gorgeous, sure, but it was so much more than that. It was the way that Jungkook didn't have to pretend to be someone he wasn't. He wasn't just  this violent boxer who was unbeatable. He was so much more than that, and Jimin saw that. Jimin could see him even when he was pretending. It was the way that all the anger just fizzled away whenever he was with him. It was the way that things just seemed natural with him. 

He liked him. He really, really liked him. 

And that scared him. 

"Okay my turn," Yoongi said, pulling him out of his thoughts.

"Oops! All of time!" Jungkook said, jumping off the chair and running to the door, "Maybe next time!" 

"Brat." Yoongi muttered, fond smile on his face as he picked the pen up.

 

~~~

 

Jimin stood outside Namjoon's door, ringing the doorbell. He had to rush over after getting an 'urgent' cryptic text message from Namjoon saying that he needed to see Jimin now and that it was so urgent. 

The door practically flew open with Namjoon standing there with a grin on his face. 

"Namjoon, what was so important that it couldn't wait?" Jimin said, pushing past him as he entered his house, "I'm in the middle of doing something for my bo -Oh." 

Jimin stopped mid-step, breath practically hitching in his throat as awkwardness and tension settled into the air.

"Hey Jiminie." Taehyung said with a small smile, eyes sunken as if he hadn't slept.

"I can't do this right now," Jimin said, shaking his head, his fluffy pink hair bouncing with each turn of his head. 

"Jimin, stop." Namjoon said, standing in front of the door, "I heard about your fight, and I can't stand the fact that my two best friends aren't talking to each other." 

They stood there in a tense silence, neither one saying anything, but having much to say. 

"Well, is anyone going to say something, or shall I?" Namjoon asked, crossing his arms over his bulky chest.

"Taehyung had plenty to say last night." Jimin snapped. 

"I didn't mean it, Min," Taehyung said, regretfully. 

"You wouldn't have said it if you didn't mean it, Tae," Jimin said, "That's what hurt the most. The fact that you could even think all those things about me, someone who was supposed to be your best friend." 

"Is." Taehyung corrected, "Is my best friend." 

"If that's how you treat your best friends, I don't want to see how you would treat your normal friends." Jimin said, shaking his head. 

"Jimin, just let me explain," Taehyung said. 

"You've said enough." 

"Jimin," Namjoon said, "Please. Let him explain." 

"You don't even know what we're fighting about, Joon! Stay out of it!" Jimin snapped. 

"You're mad." Namjoon said, not taking that snappy comment to heart, "I'm going to give both of you space while I get the alcohol, because clearly we need it." 

Taehyung waited until Namjoon was out of earshot before moving closer to Jimin. 

"How long are we going to keep fighting?" He asked. 

"How long have you been thinking that I was a bad writer, and that my job was stupid?" Jimin countered, "How long did you think that 'best friend was pushing it'?" 

"Look, Minnie-" 

"Don't call me that, Taehyung." Jimin said through gritted teeth. 

"Can we talk about this?" Taehyung sighed, "Like adults?" 

"An adult wouldn't have said the things you said." 

"An adult would have told Namjoon the second they found out." Taehyung spat. 

"Deep down you and I both know that not telling him is the right decision." Jimin said. 

"And how do you know that?" 

"Because he still doesn't know despite you fighting with me!" Jimin spat out, "If you really thought I was doing the wrong thing, you would have told him!" 

Silence descended upon the conversation, with the realisation hitting Taehyung. 

"You and I both know that we're in too deep now." Jimin said, breaking the silence, "I started this, so I have to finish it. And I have to do it with Namjoon not knowing."

"He should know," Taehyung said softly, not believing in his own words. 

"No he shouldn't," Jimin said, "You know that. You know that he shouldn't. You know that I need that leverage if I want to use it, but most of all, I need to keep him safe. If he finds out, neither one of us is safe anymore, and that includes you."

"Now what?" Taehyung asked, almost dejected.

"I finish this." Jimin said, that feeling of bile rising up his throat returning. He hated it, but he had to finish this, personal feelings aside. 

"And then what?" 

"We'll cross that bridge when we get there," Jimin said, not knowing the answer himself. 

"If you publish whatever you found....They're going to come for you," Taehyung warned. 

"That's none of your concern anymore, Taehyung." Jimin spat out, words dripping with venom. 

"I may not be your best friend anymore, but that doesn't mean I'm not your friend." Taehyung said, eyes wide, filled with sadness. 

"Friend is kind of pushing it at this point, don't you think?" Jimin said, echoing Taehyung's words from the night before.

"Do you hate me that much?" Taehyung asked.

"I could ask you the same question." 

"How long are you going to keep this up, Min?" Taehyung asked, hurt written all over his face. 

"For as long as it takes for me not to be mad at you!" Jimin almost yelled. 

"Scream at me then! Yell! Shout!" Taehyung said, "Just please, stop being mad at me. I need my best friend." 

"If you needed me, you wouldn't have treated me that way, Tae." 

"You called me Tae," Taehyung said, slightly relieved, "You don't hate me."

Jimin said nothing. He didn't hate Taehyung. Of course he didn't. How could he? Taehyung and him have been through so much together. Sure things were said in the heat of the moment but that didn't mean that Jimin was going to let years worth of friendship go down the drain. Jimin knew he was being petty, but he was angry. So, so, angry. 

"I don't hate you." Jimin said. 

"I'm sorry, Jimin," Taehyung told him, a little teary eyed, "I really am sorry." 

That's all Jimin needed. All this while, Taehyung never once apologised. All Jimin needed was a sincere apology.

Jimin deflated, the anger leaving his body. 

"I'm sorry. Min. I'm really-" Taehyung said, tears building up, words getting stuck behind the growing lump in his throat. 

Jimin couldn't take the tears. He rushed forward, pulling Taehyung in for a tight hug, burying his face into the crook of Taehyung's neck. He felt a sob release from Taehyung's body as they hugged. 

"I heard crying!" Namjoon said, rushing out of the kitchen with a bottle of vodka in one hand and tequila in the other. 

Tae made a sound that was in between a laugh and a sob as he pulled Jimin closer to him. 

"Is everything okay? Are you guys good?" Namjoon asked, cautiously approaching the both of them. 

Taehyung pulled away from Jimin, both sets of eyes on the smaller man; awaiting his response. 

"We're good." Jimin nodded with a smile as he pulled Taehyung back for another hug. 

"Wait I want in!" Namjoon said, setting the bottles of clear alcohol down onto the nearest table and charging at his two best friends with a dimpled smile as he embraced them. 

"Doesn't this feel like a HBO movie?" Jimin asked. 

"More like a Lifetime one, actually," Namjoon said in a soft voice, enjoying the hug. 

"I can't breathe!" Taehyung said, gasping for air, his tears staining Jimin's shirt. 

"That's how you know its a good hug." Namjoon muttered. 

Just then, the doorbell rang. 

"Oh! He's here!" Namjoon said, separating himself from the two of them and practically bounding to the door. 

"Thank god!" Taehyung said, pulling away, gasping for air, "I know that choking is one of my kinks, but not like this." 

"Who's here?" Jimin asked. 

"I know as much as you do right now," Taehyung muttered. 

"Remind me to update you," Jimin told him. 

"There's more?" 

"So, so much more," Jimin said, shaking his head in disbelief. 

"Hey baby, I'm sorry I was late, there was this hold up in the gym and a lot going on right now." 

"You're here now, that's all that matters." Namjoon said, "Come in! Meet my friends." 

"Ah yes, Minnie and TaeTae. The two best friends you can't stop raving about." 

"Min! Tae!" Namjoon called out, making them turn around from their conversation, "I want you to meet someone special." 

"Namjoon! You can't keep introducing us to your delivery boys and calling them special!" Taehyung complained. 

"It's not the delivery boy this time!" Namjoon said, leading Jin into the house that he had already become familiar with, "I want you to meet my boyfriend." 

"Fuck." Jimin muttered under his breath. 

"Jin, this is-" 

"Jimin." Jin said, mouth agape. 

"You two know each other?" Namjoon asked, cocking an eyebrow. 

"We're..." Jin said, trailing off, trying to hide the surprise on his face.

"No! We don't." Jimin said quickly. 

"But ho-" 

"Hi! I'm Taehyung! It's so nice to finally meet you," Taehyung interjected before Namjoon could say anything else. 

"Jin." He introduced himself, "I've heard a lot about you two." 

"So have we," Jimin said, eyeing Jin. 

"Namjoon, do you need help with the drinks?" Taehyung asked, pulling Namjoon into the kitchen before he could ask anything else. 

"You know," Jin said, walking towards Jimin, an intimidating stare on his face, "When Namjoon said he had a friend called Minnie, I wasn't expecting you." 

"I knew about you all along," Jimin said with a sickly sweet smile. 

"Does he know?" Was all Jin asked. 

"Does he look like he does?" Jimin countered, tilting his head. 

"I underestimated you." 

"And I overestimated you." Jimin said. 

"Are you going to tell him?" Jin asked. 

"That depends." 

"On?" 

"The way you treat me in the gym." Jimin told him. 

"Are you blackmailing me to be nicer to you?" Jin said, almost scoffing. 

"I'm not blackmailing you," Jimin said, "I'm simply showing you that I can be trusted." 

"By blackmailing me?" 

"I could have told him you know?" Jimin said, "I could have told him every single thing last week when I found out. But, I didn't. Why do you think that is?" 

"Because if you told him, I would have killed you." 

"Yes, killing your boyfriends best friend is definitely the way to win his heart," Jimin said sarcastically. 

"Don't tell him" Jin said. 

"If I wanted to tell him, he would already know." 

"That's not what I meant," Jin said with a sigh, "I meant, don't tell him because I want to tell him myself." 

"You want to what?!" 

"I'm going to tell him." 

"About the-" 

"Everything." Jin said, "I'm going to tell him everything." 

"When?" 

"Soon." Jin answered, "I've just gotten him used to the idea of me running the underground boxing ring. I just have to ease him into it." 

"You're putting him in danger, Jin." Jimin said, "Especially now with the Hwan Clan." 

"You're in danger too." Jin told him, as if that was a defence.

"Because I chose this for myself." Jimin said, "Namjoon chose you. Not the lifestyle. Not the guns. But You." 

There was a brief moment where Jimin saw Jin's facade fall. The mighty gang leader, afraid of nothing facade fell, replaced with a tired, worn out and regretful face. 

"Is being with him a mistake?" Jin asked him, voice pained. 

"You can't control who you love," Jimin answered, "Even if you know how painful that love will be."

"Speaking from experience?" The older man asked.

"I'm starting to." 

"Should I not tell him?" He asked Jimin. 

"I don't know, Jin. I really don't." 

"He's coming to the fight tomorrow." Jin told him. 

"If he comes, people are going to know that he's associated with you." Jimin said, "He can't be in the stands forever, especially not if you're going to tell him." 

"If he can handle tomorrow, then I'll tell him everything." 

"Everything?" 

"Including the Hwan Clan and the murder of my father." Jin said, mind made up.

"What if he doesn't want to be with you after that?" 

"Then I'll let him go." Jin told him, heart weighing heavy in his chest, "Forever." 

"I was wrong about you," Jimin found himself saying. "You're a good man, Jin."

"Maybe, I was wrong about you too." Jin said with a small smile.

"How so?" Jimin asked.

"You can be trusted after all." 

 

 

~~~

 

Jungkook sat on the bench inside the locker room, the door doing little to muffle the sounds of cheering and screams from the fight outside. 

He wasn't going to lie - He was nervous. Sure, he had felt nerves before a fight, but never this much. It was like there was a weight that lay heavy on his chest, almost crushing him, filling him with a self doubt that didn't exist before. This fight was different. He knew that. It was almost like a show of strength. He needed to prove something, not only to the other gang and to the people watching, but to his own gang. He needed to show Jin, Hoseok and Yoongi that he could do this.That he could be relied on. That he could be counted on. That even though he didn't have the Kim symbol tattooed on him, he was still one of them. That he wasn't just some kid that Yoongi picked off the streets. He needed to prove to himself that he was worth more than his past.

There was something about the way the screams were louder today that made him nervous. It wasn't something that he could explain, but the fact that the crowd seemed larger today....It just didn't sit well with him. His leg was bouncing up and down, anxiety and dark thoughts settling in, winding him up in the worst ways possible. His fight was next and Jungkook wasn't ready. God, if only people could see him now. He knew that he was undeserving of the title that he had been given - The Unbeatable JK. The same one who could barely manage to bandage his hand before this fight because they were shaking. 

What was wrong with him? Why was he behaving so weak?! He's a member of a gang for fucks sake! If anything he should be confident! This fight should be nothing to him! Just another scuffle. 

But it wasn't. It was so much more and he knew it. 

He took a deep breath in, trying to calm himself down, before anyone could come in and see him. The last thing he needed right now were rumours flying around. He had a reputation to uphold, and there was no way he was going to let something as stupid as a weak moment ruin that. 

Deep breath in. Hold. Deep breath out. 

Deep breath in. Hold. Deep breath out. 

There was a knock at the door. Jungkook's head snapped up. He tried to remain as cool and composed as he could, pushing down all the emotion he felt, hoping that his face was stoic and blank enough that no one really recognised what was going on.

The first thing he saw was the soft pink hair, and then he heard the noise from outside, the cheers and screams almost taunting him as the door opened up.

"Knock knock," Jimin said with a smile, closing the door behind him, the screams turning into muffles as he entered with a metal box in his hand. 

"What's that?" Jungkook asked, relief almost sweeping over him. There was something comforting about Jimin's presence that Jungkook couldn't explain. 

"First aid kit!" Jimin said, proudly, "I noticed that you didn't have one the last time and it's incredibly important that your wounds gets cleaned-" 

"What is it?" Jungkook asked, noticing that Jimin stopped halfway through the sentence to just stare at him. 

"Are you okay?" Jimin asked, softly. 

"What?" 

"What's wrong?" Jimin asked, stepping closer to him. 

"Nothing." Jungkook said quickly. 

"Something's definitely wrong, I can tell," Jimin said. 

"N-Nothing's wrong. I'm fine! What are you talking about?" 

"Alright then." Jimin said, grabbing the bandage from beside Jungkook, "Why don't I bandage your hands, yeah?" 

"What are you doing back here, anyway?" Jungkook asked as Jimin took his hand in his, unwrapping the white bandage from it's holder. 

"Bandaging you up," Jimin told him with a cheeky smile.

They settled into a silence. 

"Are you scared?" Jimin asked him. 

"I'm never scared," Jungkook lied. 

"I am." 

"You are?" 

"If you haven't noticed," Jimin said, looking up at Jungkook with wide eyes and small smile, "I don't like watching you get hurt." 

"Careful Jimin, someone might think you actually care," Jungkook said. 

"I do." He said, "I do care. A lot." 

Jungkook's breath hitched in his throat, "I won't get hurt." 

Jimin's thumb brushed gently over the scars on Jungkook's unwrapped knuckles, "These say differently...." 

"I'll be okay." Jungkook said, not sure if he was reassuring himself or Jimin. 

"I'll be here either way, whether you're okay or not," Jimin told him, finding himself actually meaning what he was saying. He had thrown all caution to the wind, undercover journalist be damned. He liked Jungkook and he wasn't going to deny himself that anymore. He would deal with the consequences when it came, but for now, all he wanted to do was be there for Jungkook, especially now, when he needed him the most. 

"Jimin..." Jungkook said, voice barely over a whisper. 

"Well," Jimin said, keeping the bandage away, "You're all bandaged up, Kookie. I guess I will see you out there." 

Jimin got up, going to walk away when Jungkook caught his wrist in his vice grip, not letting go. 

"Kookie?" Jimin asked. 

"I'm nervous." Jungkook said, not looking him in the eye, but rather at the bruises on his wrist, "I'm really, really nervous, Jimin and I-" 

"Hey, hey," Jimin said, kneeling in front of Jungkook, using his free hand to cup his cheek, "Look at me. Right at me." 

Jungkook allowed himself the luxury of feeling vulnerable. But only with him. Only with Jimin. 

He lifted his gaze to stare into Jimin's eyes, deep pools of warm honey looking back at him, a smile on Jimin's face. 

"It's okay to be nervous. It's okay to feel scared, Kookie. No one expects you to be strong all the time," Jimin said, gentle and soft, "Whether you win, or lose, we'll still be here. We're not going anywhere and it's important for you to know that. We're here for you Jungkook. We're not here because you're JK, neither are we here because of a title like 'Unbeatable.' We're here for you and only you." 

"Are you going to watch?" 

"I'll be right there in the stands," Jimin reassured him, "I'll be one screaming the loudest." 

Jimin ghosted his thumb over Jungkook's cheek, smiling at him. 

"Do you want to hear a fun fact or a joke?" Jimin asked, realising that Jungkook might just need a distraction. 

Jungkook couldn't help that smile that was already forming on his face. Of course Jimin would want to cheer him up, because that's just the kind of person he was.

"Surprise me." Jungkook said.

"Did you know that a single strand of Spaghetti is called Spaghetto?" Jimin said, giggling. 

"What?" 

"I swear! It's real!" Jimin said, eyes disappearing as he laughed, throwing himself on Jungkook. 

His laugh was so infectious, instantly brightening up the place. Jungkook could feel his worries almost melt away as he laughed along with Jimin. 

Their laughter died down, both looking at each other, smile on their faces.

"You're going to be amazing out there, Kookie," Jimin said, "This isn't your first first and it sure as hell won't be your last." 

"Jimin," Jungkook breathed out, leaning forward, closing the gap in between them. 

Jimin could feel his heart race and Jungkook hadn't done anything except lean forward. His eyes fluttered shut as he closed the gap in between them, arms slithering to Jungkook's neck as he crashed their lips together. It was soft and slow, and almost intimate in a way that neither one of them could describe. It was different than the other kisses that they shared. Their lips, already so familiar with each other, moved slowly and languidly, almost like muscle memory, fitting together perfectly like a jigsaw puzzle.

 

 

Jimin pulled back first, too overwhelmed with the feeling, leaning his forehead against Jungkook's, "What was that for?" 

"Good luck." Jungkook answered. 

There was two knocks on the door, making both of them look at it, regretfully pulling apart. 

"That's my cue." Jungkook said. 

"Good luck," Jimin answered, a hint of pink tinting his cheeks, "I'll be cheering for you." 

"That's all the motivation I need," Jungkook said with a smile on his face. 

Jimin exited the room first, walking towards Taehyung and Namjoon in the makeshift stands.

"What took so long?" Taehyung asked. 

"He needed luck," Jimin answered, shrugging, a smile playing on his face. 

Jungkook took a deep breath, exiting the room and entering the ring, adrenaline already pumping in his veins as he waited for his opponent, who he still didn't know, to come out. He couldn't help glancing around the room, eyes immediately scanning for Jimin. It wasn't hard to spot the pink hair that stood out from the rest of the crowd. Jimin shot him a wide smile, mouthed something that Jungkook couldn't make out and gave him a thumbs up. 

"That's him, huh?" Jungkook heard, making him whip his head around, looking at the tall, buff man standing in front of him. 

"What?" 

"Cotton candy." The man said, eyes on Jimin, a sinister smile growing on his face as he stood toe to toe with Jungkook, "Heard a lot about him." 

"Shut the fuck up." Jungkook spat through gritted teeth. 

The man was bigger than him, buffer than him. His muscles rippled with every move that he made. Jungkook could immediately tell that he was flexing in an attempt to scare and intimidate him.

"Wonder if he tastes as good as he looks," The man said, taunting Jungkook, "When I'm done with you, maybe I'll go see for myself. Make everyone watch as he moans my name while on his knees with my cock in his mouth." 

He could feel anger coursing through his veins, running alongside the adrenaline. He was practically fuming, tongue in his cheek as he clenched his fists tightly, just waiting for the fight to start so he could kill the asshole standing before him. All Jungkook could see was red, and he would be damned sure that's all everyone else saw as well. This wasn't just about the gang anymore. This was about protecting Jimin, and Jungkook would make damn sure that everyone in this goddamn place knew not to mess with what was his.

As soon as the bell signalling that the match had begun went off  - Jungkook lunged. His fist flew towards the mans face, feeling the skin beneath it ripple. 

The crowd went silent, no one expecting Jungkook to react so harshly. But then cheers exploded, screaming for blood; they didn't care whose. They just wanted a bloodbath, and Jungkook was giving it to them. 

The burning intensity of rage washed over him as Jungkook took another swing, feeling bones crack under his powerful fist. When he pulled back, all he saw was red. He saw blood on his hands, on the floor, and when the man got up - On his face. His nose had been broken. Jungkook couldn't help the powerful smile that broke out on his face. He was proud of the destruction and the pain that he was causing and it showed.

"You talk a big game," Jungkook said, bouncing from one foot to another, "Maybe you're the one that needs to eat a dick." 

The man growled, moving forward, punching Jungkook square on the jaw, making him stumble back from the sheer force of it. He lunged, punching Jungkook once, twice and then a third time. The pain was dulled out by the adrenaline that was in his veins. Jungkook kicked the man on the shin, pushing him back and forcing himself to stand up, enduring the pain. It was dull, but it still throbbed. He moved forward, a little sluggish, the sting and the burn of his skin screaming in protest against the movement. But he could endure it. He's had enough practice.

Jungkook spat at the side of the ring, staining it red with blood. The man grinned, taunting him. 

"That all you got?" He scoffed, looking at the man, rolling his eyes. 

"Just getting started, princess," The man gritted out. 

He waited, bouncing from one leg to the other, focused. He waited for the man to attack, feeling blood trickle down the side of his split lip, already knowing where he was going to aim. The man didn't care about strategy and Jungkook could tell. He was just trying to deliver the harshest blows, relying on his brute strength and height over Jungkook, more than anything else. Just as expected, the man lunged, ducking down a little, aiming for Jungkook's yellowing bruise that was healing by his hip. Jungkook dodged the hit, using his elbow to strike the man wherever he could land. Those two seconds of shock was all the window that Jungkook had to pummel the man, channeling the rage and anger that he had, using that blinding heat against the man. 

Jungkook could barely hear the screams and cheers of the crowd over the sound of the blood rushing in his ears. He pulled back, seeing the blood all over his hands. Blood that wasn't his. His chest was heaving from the physical and emotional exertion. The man was down, blood covering almost the entirety of his face, dripping onto the white floor, struggling to get back up, hissing at the pain. 

"Get up and fight you stupid fuck!" Jungkook yelled, panting. 

But he didn't. 

Jungkook took a step towards him, leaning down, "If you ever talk about him again, I'll break your jaw right off your fucking face." 

And with that, Jungkook left the ring, taking one last look back at the man and scoffed. 

"I have to go." Jimin said, to Taehyung, scrambling off the bleachers. 

"Jimin I don't thin-" Taehyung started to protest, grabbing his forearm to stop him. 

"He needs me, Tae," Jimin said, removing Taehyung's fingers from his arm, "He'll never hurt me." 

"Where is he going?" Namjoon asked, oblivious. 

"Nowhere," Taehyung said, watching as Jimin left the bleachers, practically running to the locker room. 

"Is that JK's locker room? Why is he going in there? Is he even allowed in there?" Namjoon asked question after question. 

"Remember how Jimin told you that he got fired, but then found another job?" Taehyung said, watching as realisation dawned over Namjoon. 

"He works for Jin in the gym, doesn't he?" Namjoon said. 

"He does." 

"How long have you known?" Namjoon asked. 

"Since the beginning." 

"Jimin knows about Jin too, doesn't he?" Namjoon asked, jaw tightening.

"We both do." Taehyung said, a sense of guilt washing over him from telling Namjoon.

"How much does he know?" Namjoon asked. 

"How much do you?"  

"I have to talk to Jin." Namjoon said, anger written all over his face as he stood up. 

"Namj-" Taehyung said, trying to stop him, but it was too late. Namjoon was gone.

For the entire fight, Jimin was on the edge of his seat. Wincing and hissing in pain as though the punches were delivered to him rather than Jungkook. The entire fight, he dug his fingers into the edge of his seat, wanting nothing more than to run up there and hold Jungkook in his arms. Every punch, every sound of fists against skin, echoing and bouncing off the cement walls, even louder than the cheers for more bloodshed. 

Jimin could see Jungkook's eyes darkening, the fire and darkness taking over him. Even with blood on his face and hands, Jungkook wanted more, and Jimin could tell. There was a rage, and darkness that took over Jungkook each time he stepped into the ring. It was as if he was a completely different person when he was in there. But somehow, today it was different, and Jimin didn't know why. It was like Jungkook wouldn't stop until there was blood covering every inch of the white ring. Something happened in the fight, and Jimin wanted to know what. 

He pushed the door open, eyes scanning every corner, every inch for Jungkook. 

"Kookie." Jimin called out. 

"I'm fine." He heard from the back. 

Jimin rushed over, watching as Jungkook tried to wash the almost dried up blood from his hands, scrubbing with his nails, as the blood swirled around the sink, bright and fresh, before going down the drain.

"You're going to hurt yourself if you keep scrubbing like that," Jimin told him. 

"I'm fine." Jungkook said, stoic. 

"Move." Jimin said softly, walking up to him, gently pushing his hand away as he wiped the blood off with gentle strokes of his thumb. 

Jungkook couldn't keep his eyes off Jimin. He treated him so gently, so delicately, as if Jungkook, the underground boxer with scars and bruises, and literal blood all over him, would break at any time. They worked in silence, with Jimin washing the blood off and Jungkook just staring at him. 

He turned the tap off, grabbing tissues from the roll and dabbing his hands softly until the water dried up. 

"Sit down on the bench," Jimin instructed, throwing the wad of tissues away. 

Jungkook didn't even question him as he sat down on the bench, watching as Jimin got the first aid kit from the table he set it down on. 

He was gentle. That was one of the things that Jungkook envied. The fact that Jimin would walk around with a permanent smile on his face, seemingly untouched by all the darkness that surrounded this cruel world. And then there was him, who was made only for destruction. Who was dark, and full of a burning rage that he took out on everyone and everything that was around him. He destroyed every single thing. He was selfish. He knew that he was. He was selfish for wanting Jimin. He was selfish in that, he knew full well what his world had to offer wasn't something that Jimin should even be near. Jimin was meant for a whirlwind romance. He was made to experience the things that romantic comedies had - The cliches, and the amusement park dates. He wasn't meant for an underground boxing ring, nor was he meant for guns and drugs and everything that came with Jungkook. Yet, Jungkook wanted him. 

"What are you thinking about?" Jimin asked him as he poured disinfectant onto a cotton ball. 

"I won." Jungkook said. 

"I know," Jimin replied with a smile, taking Jungkook's hand in his, "This may sting." 

"I just got punched and you're worried about a little sting?" Jungkook told him, amused. 

Jimin dabbed the cotton ball on the broken and torn skin, hearing a small hiss from Jungkook, "Don't say I didn't warn you." 

"It doesn't hurt." 

"We seem to be having this conversation a lot," Jimin told him, blowing softly on the open wound. 

"What conversation?" 

"About wounds, and how they don't hurt even though it does." Jimin told him, focusing on Jungkook's hand. 

"Are you talking about this?" Jungkook said, bringing his free hand to Jimin's wrist, brushing over the still dark purple bruise.

"No." Jimin said, shaking his head, "I'm talking about you getting hurt." 

"The boxing?"

"I don't like seeing you get hurt," Jimin told him, finally looking up, meeting his eyes. 

"I'm fine." 

"You're literally bleeding, Jungkook." Jimin said, getting another cotton ball for his dried up, bloodied lip.

"It's just a cut." Jungkook said, dismissively. 

Jimin shook his head, "How is that just a cut? You have bruises everywhere! I can't tell whether this blood is even yours or his anymore!" 

"He deserved it." Jungkook muttered, ignoring the stinging from his knuckles and lips. 

"Because he's from the other gang?" Jimin said, pouring disinfectant onto another cotton ball. 

"No." Jungkook told him, "Because he disrespected you." 

"What?" Jimin said, hand dropping, almost in shock. 

"Nothing." Jungkook said quickly. 

"Disrespected me? What are you talking about?" Jimin asked. 

"He said some less than complimentary things about you, that's all," Jungkook told him. 

"How does he even know me?" 

"He saw you coming out of the locker room," Jungkook said. 

"I guess that makes me part of the gang, huh," Jimin said, with a small smile. He should be scared. He saw first hand what these men can do, and yet, for some weird reason, he wasn't. Sitting here, wiping the blood off Jungkook, he still wasn't in the least bit scared. He felt safe. With him. 

"I just told you that a gang member insulted you, and that's what you say?" 

"I wasn't given a script of what to say," Jimin joked. 

"You really are something else." 

"What would you like to me to say instead?" Jimin asked, dabbing the cut on Jungkook's forehead. 

"Aren't you scared?" Jungkook asked him. 

"Of what?" 

"Everything! This world! This life that we lead!" Jungkook told him, and in a softer voice, he added, "Of me." 

"I knew what this whole underground boxing thing would lead to. And I knew what I was getting myself into as well, with everything you told me. If I didn't leave then, I'm sure as hell not leaving now." Jimin told him. 

"What about me? Aren't you scared of me?" 

"No." Jimin said, dropping his hand to caress Jungkook's cheek, "I'm not scared of you. I don't think that I ever will be scared of you." 

"You could get hurt." 

"You'd never hurt me." Jimin said, conviction in his voice. 

"You've seen what I'm capable of, Jimin! I hurt people! That's what I do!" Jungkook said, pushing his hand away from his face, standing up, a mix of hurt and anger taking over him, "That's all I do!" 

"Who let you believe that?" Jimin said in a soft voice, heart breaking at how lowly he thought of himself. 

"Look around me, Jimin! Fuck that! Look at me! Look at what this world does to you!" Jungkook said, raising his voice, pointing at his swollen lip, "You don't want to be in this world. You shouldn't. It destroys you, Jimin..." 

"You're in it, and it hasn't destroyed you." Jimin said, standing up, walking towards him, "You're here and you care enough to want to protect someone like me. You fought four guys all by yourself just because they were harassing me. You stood in that ring, against all odds, and beat up some jacked up man who was probably on steroids, just because he said something disrespectful about me." 

Jimin stepped closer to Jungkook with each word that he spoke. 

"You're more than what you think of yourself, Jungkook. You're so much more than that. You're not meant for destruction, and you don't break everything you touch." Jimin said, cupping his hand over Jungkook's cheek, softly as not to hurt him and the bruise that was already beginning to form, "Someone who was meant only for destruction wouldn't have been nervous before a fight because you didn't want to let the people around you down. Someone who was meant for destruction wouldn't have cared about what some people said about some guy you just met barely two weeks ago! Someone who was meant for destruction wouldn't care about someone like me. And someone who was meant for destruction would want to destroy everything around them. You don't, Kookie. You're so, so much more than you give yourself credit for. You're sweet, and kind, and funny, and you look up trivia facts because you think that I would like it. So tell me, Kook, how do you think that you're only meant for destruction?" 

He smiled up at Jungkook, willing him to believe the words that he spoke. Wanting him to believe it. Needing him to believe that he was more than what he thought of himself. 

Jungkook had never been this emotional, or vulnerable with anyone before. But somehow Jimin was different. Was this what Yoongi was telling him about? The comfort? The fact that somehow, Jimin had managed to tear down his walls and make a place in his heart? Was this what it was like to trust someone so wholeheartedly as to expose the weakest points of yourself? 

Was Jungkook falling? 

"Kookie." Jimin said, bringing Jungkook back to Earth and out of his reverie, "I know you're not going to believe my words right now, but I need you to know, that I'll be saying this until the day you do. You need to have more faith in yourself. And you definitely need to stop thinking that you're destructive. I know that you're everything but that." 

Jimin stepped back, still smiling at Jungkook, affection and fondness shining in his eyes. 

"I'm putting the bandages here if you need them," Jimin said, closing up the first aid kit, "Although, I read somewhere that cuts and bruises heal better when they're exposed to oxygen, so maybe don't put them on unless you're going in for a shower. Oh and if you do shower, make sure you cover them up well! Don't scrub too hard in there!" 

He looked over at Jungkook with a soft smile, "Bye, Kookie." 

Jungkook looked to the already closed door, "Bye Jiminie." 

He sat down on the benches, with his head hung, so deep in thought that he didn't even realise when Yoongi walked in. 

"Kid?" Yoongi said, "You okay?" 

"Fine." 

"You don't look fine." 

"I said I'm fine, Yoongi." Jungkook insisted. 

"You did well out there," Yoongi said, leaning against the wall opposite him. 

Jungkook said nothing. 

"You completely took him down. I didn't really expect it to happen so fast," Yoongi said. 

"Just ask me what you want to ask me." Jungkook told him, already knowing where this was going.

"How did you know I wanted to ask you something? I could just be complimenting you, you know." Yoongi said, a smile on his face. 

"I've known you since I was 15, old man," Jungkook told him.

"Watch it, kid." 

"What do you want to know?" 

"What did he say to you?" Yoongi asked, "I saw you guys talking." 

"He said something about Jimin," Jungkook answered. 

"Is that what got you so riled up?" 

"It didn't rile me up," Jungkook denied.

"He's still bleeding out there, Kook!" 

"Calm down Leona Lewis," Jungkook said, "Everyone I fight, bleeds." 

"It was different this time and you know it!" Yoongi told him. 

"No it wasn't." Jungkook denied, not believing the words he spoke. 

Yoongi squinted, giving him a once over, "Did you get cleaned up?" 

"Jimin helped." Jungkook told him. 

Yoongi crossed his arms over his chest, putting his foot on the wall, supporting himself, "Is that why you're in here, alone? To think?" 

"What would I have to think about? The fight?" 

"About the fact that you're falling for him." Yoongi said. 

"I'm not!" Jungkook was all too quick to deny, fear in his voice. 

"You're scared." Yoongi said, a sudden realisation. 

"What? No!" Jungkook retorted, quick to deny. 

"Oh my god! You're actually scared."

"I'm not! I'm not afraid of anything!" 

"You're falling for him, aren't you?" He said more than he asked, not giving Jungkook a chance to respond, "That's why you asked me all of those things in the office. You're falling and you're afraid. You're afraid that you're going to let him into your life and it's going to be something you can't control. You're afraid of letting him in. You're afraid of being happy and actually falling further and further and loving him, because you know that the one thing you can't control is that happiness being taken away from you. You're afra-" 

"I'm not afraid of anything!" Jungkook yelled, his loud voice bouncing off and echoing through the small locker room. 

"You've already fallen, haven't you?" Yoongi said in a soft voice. 

There was no point in denying it anymore. It wasn't going to work. 

"Yeah..." Jungkook admitted with a sigh, nodding, "Yeah, I have."

 

 

 

Chapter Text

"Where is he?" Jaehwan demanded, clutching the glass of whiskey tighter in his grip. 

"He's injured-" 

"Did I ask that or did I ask where he was?" Jaehwan spat out, anger taking over him.

"I'll get him," Kang said, not wanting to incur his wrath. He's been on the end of that one too many times, and it was never good. It always ended in bloodshed. At least this time, it wouldn't be his. 

Jaehwan leaned back against the wooden chair, bringing the crystal glass to his lips and taking a sip of the expensive whiskey, as Kang dragged in the bloodied, and bruised fighter in front of him. 

"You had one job." Jaehwan told him calmly, setting the glass down on the table, narrowed eyes glaring at the exhausted boxer in front of him, "Your only job was to beat JK up! To make a show of maiming him in front of Jin and the rest of the Kim Clan and you couldn't even fucking do that!" 

The man before him said nothing. He couldn't. His jaw was throbbing, pain radiating from every inch of skin. 

Jaehwan took another sip from his drink. Before the glass could be set down, Kang set a black gun in front of him, the Clan symbol engraved on the hilt. 

"Give me one reason why I shouldn't shoot your fucking brains out." Jaehwan stated, monotonously, voice, like his face - devoid of any emotion. 

"You need me!" The man said, almost desperately. 

"No." Jaehwan told him, "I needed you, but you let me down. I even fucking paid you double! And yet..." 

He clicked his tongue, eyes on the gun, hand on the crystal glass, barely holding any alcohol.

"What a shame..." Jaehwan said to no one in particular, "You had so much potential. All of that is just...wasted now." 

"He has a weakness!" The man blurted out, a desperate attempt to save his life.

He's seen this scene one too many times, but he never thought that he would be on the other end of this interrogation. He's seen people beg, plead, offer up anything and everything to try and keep their lives; but Jaehwan was never one for mercy. He never thought that this was how his life would turn out. He never expected to be on the other end of the barrel. 

"What?" 

"JK! He has a weakness!" The man repeated, "The only reason I lost is because I taunted him about it." 

"Weakness?" Jaehwan said, more than he asked, finger playing with the hilt of the gun.

"The boy! The pink haired one! The hair like cotton candy! I saw them together! JK likes him. It's him! The boy is the weakness!" The man said, words tumbling out of him, trying anything and everything to prolong his life. He didn't want to die. 

Jaehwan glanced at Kang, both thinking the same thing. Cotton candy. That rang a bell. 

"Say I believe you," Jaehwan said. 

"He is! I know he is! That pink haired boy will bring JK down! He'll bring the whole Kim Clan down!" 

Jaehwan picked his glass back up, and downed the remains of the drink, setting both the gun and the drink down on the table, "Let's hope you're right." 

The man deflated, a sigh of relief leaving his body, "I knew you were merciful." 

"I am." Jaehwan proclaimed, standing up from the wooden chair with a creak as he turned to leave the place. "Kang." 

Before Jaehwan could even blink, Kang picked the gun up, cocked it and shot the man in between his eyes. He heard the thud of the body hitting the floor before he even heard the gun fired. 

"If I had shot the gun myself, I would have made him beg for a death that would never come. I would have enjoyed watching the life drain out of his eyes," Jaehwan said, venom dripping from every word he spoke, but his face remained stoic, "I really am merciful." 

"You are, Jaehwan." Kang said, pocketing the gun back into the holster. 

"This pink haired boy that he mentioned, is that the same one that those four men were talking about?" 

"It seems so." 

"Find out more." Jaehwan ordered, "Oh and bring me Archer. I have some work for him." 

 

~~~

 

Hoseok walked into the gym, still fairly early in the morning, so he wasn't expecting anyone to be in. He pushed past the doors, hearing the signature creak and the slight protest of the door hinges that haven't been oiled in a while. He was greeted by the sight of Jimin belting out lyrics passionately, with his eyes closed, to a song he didn't recognise while holding a mop like a microphone. 

Although Hoseok has only known Jimin for a couple of days, he couldn't help but be so endeared and fond of the pink haired boy and all of his antics. He stood there, leaning against the wall while watching Jimin twirl around, screaming the lyrics and dancing. 

Jimin did a little spin, putting his hand up, droplets of water dripping from the mop onto the floor, and a proud expression on his face. 

"That was quite the performance!" Hoseok said, clapping his hands, the sound bouncing off the walls, a cheeky smile on Hoseok's face. 

Jimin froze, eyes blowing wide with surprise, as he slowly turned around, dropping the mop onto the floor, pulling his earphones out. 

"Hoseok, I, uhh, I-" 

"I didn't know you could sing." Hoseok teased. 

"I thou-thought that no one would be here and I was just cleaning and I just-" Jimin stuttered, stumbling over his words, nervous and embarrassed. 

"I didn't know you could dance either." Hoseok said, "You dance really well." 

Jimin's cheeks tinted red, getting deeper and deeper in colour, "I dabble." 

"I dance too," Hoseok told him, walking towards him. 

"Really?" 

"Well, I used to dance more before, but I still do, here and there," He said, shrugging. 

"What happened?" 

"Life got a little busy," He said, almost regretfully, a small smile gracing his face, "I would ask if you wanted to dance, but my stitches aren't even close to being taken out yet." 

"Well, when they are, you owe me a dance session," Jimin told him. 

"I'll be sure to schedule you in," Hoseok said with a laugh, sitting down on the bleachers, leaning his weight on the palms of his hands. 

"Why are you here so early anyway?" 

"I could ask you the same question," Hoseok said. 

"Yoongi hired me to do some odd jobs here and there-" 

"He did tell me about the whole unemployed thing," Hoseok said, nodding, "I'm sorry about that, by the way." 

"Don't be," Jimin said, pushing the guilt down, "I mean, it did lead me to finding all of you. If anything, I'm grateful." 

Hoseok shot him a smile, both envious and in awe of how untouched and pure Jimin was. A part of him worried for the boy before him, with his pink hair and childlike innocence. He was naive. Almost too naive. Hoseok didn't know if he should warn him, or throw him into the deep end of what the world truly had to offer. Here, in this gym, he was both protected, but also exposed to what their world truly held. Hoseok wasn't so lucky with his journey into the gang world, and he didn't want Jimin to experience the same thing. 

"So, why are you here?" Jimin asked, setting the mop into the bucket, leaning against the ring post. 

"Yoongi and I have some things to do," Hoseok told him vaguely. 

Jimin looked up at the clock on the wall, "He won't be here for a while." 

"Gives us time to properly get to know each other then," Hoseok said with a bright smile, slight twinkle in his eyes. 

Hoseok could see Jimin hesitating, almost as if he had wanted to say something but didn't want to. 

"What's on your mind marshmallow?" Hoseok asked him with a smile. 

"Marshmallow?" 

"Yeah, marshmallow!" Hoseok said, grinning excitedly, "You're small, and sweet, and soft and you even have pink hair! Just like a marshmallow!" 

Jimin giggled, eyes crescenting, nose scrunching as he threw his head back onto the padded ring post, amused. 

"Ask me what you want to ask me." Hoseok said, encouraging him. 

"I uhh, I don't want you to feel uncomfortable..." Jimin said, cautiously. 

"If I do, I won't answer it, okay?" Hoseok reassured. 

"How did you get into this, uhh," Jimin started, unsure of how to word his question. 

"How did I, the sweet sunshine boy, get into this whole gang world?" Hoseok finished for him, an almost knowing smile on his face, as though he's sat through this question a million times. 

"I-I didn't mean that in a bad way. I just-" Jimin stuttered, afraid that he had somehow said the wrong thing. 

"You're fine, marshmallow," Hoseok reassured, "Trust me. You're alright. It's a good question, really." 

"You don't have to answer," Jimin told him. 

"You're a part of the family now," Hoseok said, "You deserve to know." 

Jimin smiled through the guilt, gulping harshly as he tried to keep his composure. Hoseok was oblivious to the internal war that Jimin had running through his head. He simply shot the pink haired boy a smile and leaned back against the bleachers, wondering where to begin. 

"I had a good childhood," Hoseok said, "A really, really good one. I was an only child; the apple of my parents' eyes. My father was a hardworking middle class man, and my mother was a homemaker. I would wake up in the morning with a smile on my face, breakfast on the table, go to school where I would hang out with a big group of friends, come home to my mother waiting for me with food, do my homework until my father came home and we would have dinner together. It truly was a picture perfect childhood." 

Hoseok sighed, almost longingly. Reminiscing about his past, especially his parents always sent a pang of hurt through his chest. His heart would clench and nostalgia would hit hard. But nostalgia is dangerous, and he knew that. It's a seductive liar. Nostalgia is memories that you created while watching through an underdeveloped lens. Its present you, watching the world as it was from naive eyes. Hoseok knew that if he were to travel back in time and live through the same scenarios and the same life, the memories wouldn't be the same. The old him was sheltered, was untouched...Was pure. 

Hoseok wasn't the same person. He hasn't been that person for a while now. 

"I was 13 when I learnt the truth." He said, "I was 13 when I learnt that everyone was fucked up in their own ways; that everyone was living a facade and hiding behind a facade that they put up to the world. We weren't a perfect family. We were broken in ways that I didn't even know we could be broken. My parents hated each other. They only showed me the happy parts of their life, because that's what they wanted me to see. They would scream, and fight, and throw profanities around like it meant nothing to them. But when I was around, they pretended to be happy; pretended like nothing was wrong. They had me out of anger. They thought that if they brought a child into the world, that their problems would magically disappear. But it didn't. It got worse." 

He shook his head, a bitter laugh tumbling from his mouth. 

"I don't know how I didn't see it," He said, "I didn't see how we weren't a perfect family. I didn't see how my mother glared at me like I was a walking mistake that she wished she never made. I didn't see how my father hated coming back to the house, which in hindsight was probably why he was barely home at all - Why he was barely in the house- not home. It wasn't a home. It could never be home. That's why I ran away. It was soon after my thirteenth birthday when I decided that I couldn't live there anymore. I stuffed all my clothes in a bag, took out whatever cash both my parents had in their wallets, and when it was dark and they had tired themselves out from fighting - I ran. I didn't know where I was going, and neither did I think about the consequences of my actions. I just ran, and I kept running, and running, and running until I didn't recognise where I was anymore." 

"But you were only thirteen..." Jimin said in a small voice, eyes wide with concern for the thirteen year old boy that didn't exist anymore. "How did you survive?" 

"I had no choice but to survive, especially since they didn't come looking for me at all. They were happy that their little mistake had been controlled and handled." Hoseok scoffed, "I did what I had to do to survive. I would pick-pocket, and couch surf, and break into little buildings to spend the night if I had to. If there were any soup kitchens around, or stale food that no one wanted, I would jump at the chance to get it. I would catch buses out of town, exploring places myself with whatever money I could get...Things were hard, but it was my life. It was something that I had to deal with, and it only taught me to be a better person. I never once blamed anyone, not even my parents, if you could call them that." 

Hoseok leaned forward, more serious now. 

"I met someone when I was 15, who told me that, life is like a deck of cards. When we're born, we get dealt a set of cards. Some people get more, some get less; some fare better than others, while others don't do so well. We're handed these cards, and it's up to us to decide how we want to play our hand. The only difference between this card game and poker, is that, in poker, there's always a winner and a loser. But in the game of life, all that can be done, is try to survive." Hoseok said, "I took that advice to heart. I survived. And I didn't blame anyone for anything, because I played by my rules." 

"How did you get involved with all of this?" Jimin piped in. 

"I met some people soon after I turned seventeen. They were the kinds of people that your mother warned you against. The kind of people to buy prostitutes, fuck them, and not pay them after. The kind of people that when you look at on the street, you cross over or take a longer route just so you wouldn't have to see them. The kind of people to get pleasure out of seeing you bleed, and the kinds of people that even drug dealers are afraid of." Hoseok said, a bitter taste in his mouth from the memories, "Some relationships are like debts...You don't fulfil them; you repay them. And that's what I had to do. I was on the run from them. The things that they made me do, the things that I had to see, to witness with my own two eyes...I would never wish that upon my worst enemy.It was intoxicating at first - The power that it gave you. It made you feel like a God when you heard people begging for their life, knowing that they were at your mercy. But once that fades away, and you see the fear in their eyes...It gets to you. It makes you feel like a shit person. Having to wash that blood off your hands, knowing that there will always be some that you can never get off" 

His eyes glazed over, almost as if he was reliving the whole thing again and again in his head, a shudder running through his body.

'That's why I ran. I couldn't do it anymore. But they wouldn't let me. Everywhere I ran, they would find me. And that's exactly what happened." He said, finally looking up, the sparkle in his eye long gone, "It was a couple of years ago. I thought that I had finally lost them. They hadn't been able to find me for months. I was on my way back one night, when I saw some people following me, and I just knew it was them. All I remember doing was running, and running, and running. Next thing I knew, I was in here, panting, so close to passing out and-" 

"And I asked you who you were," Yoongi said, leaning against the wall, jaw taut as he continued the story, "You didn't answer the first time, or the second. You were too out of breath." 

Hoseok looked at him with love in his eyes, the sparkle slowly returning, "All I said was 'Help me.' You didn't ask any questions after that. You got out your gun, and pointed it at the door." 

"I knew from the first time I saw you that you could be trusted," Yoongi said with a smile. 

"You always did have a thing for strays, didn't you?" Hoseok told him, eyes never leaving Yoongi's as he watched him cross the floor of the gym, standing in front of Hoseok, gently cupping his cheek. 

Jimin looked to the floor, the moment seeming too intimate for him. 

"You just have a way of capturing people's hearts," Yoongi said softly, "Mine especially." 

"You're the only thing I ever did right in my life." Hoseok said, loud enough only for Yoongi to hear.  

They looked at each other, communicating only with their eyes and soft, ghost like touches. They didn't need to say anything more. They knew. And that was enough. 

Hoseok placed his hand over Yoongi's on his cheek, leaning into his touch, smiling up at the man he loved. He took Yoongi's hand in his intertwining their fingers together as he took it off his cheek, glancing back at Jimin who was still looking at the floor. 

"And that's the tragic backstory of Jung Hoseok," Hoseok joked, "But I don't regret anything that ever happened. It all led me to the place that I am in now - Happy." 

"Can I ask you something else?" Jimin asked in a small voice. 

"Anything."

"What happened to those men? The ones who chased you?" He asked him. 

The twinkle in Hoseok's eyes burnt off with a blink, eyes turning dark, voice dropping an octave as he said, "They got what they deserved." 

And that was all Jimin needed. 

"That chapter of my life is over now." Hoseok told him. 

"Speaking of lives," Yoongi said, "Jimin I need you to do me a favour." 

 

~~~

 

Namjoon walked up to Jin in the gym with the intent of getting answers, but he stopped mid way when he saw him. He saw the stress in his eyes, and the hurt and worry right after the fight. He was screaming and shouting at whoever was involved, trying to get an explanation, or an update, or anything! 

Namjoon shook his head, needing his answers. He needed to know. So he marched up there, with a speech already prepared in his head. But the second he saw Jin's eyes on his - he abandoned everything. How could he scream at him when Jin looked at him the way that he did. How could he scream at him when he physically saw Jin's anger and stress melt away with just one look? How could he scream at him when Jin treated him so gently in the middle of all of this violence, not once raising his voice, or glaring at him?

So he said nothing.

He said nothing when Jin had his arm around Namjoon's waist, barking orders at everyone. 

He said nothing when Jin intertwined their fingers, leading them to the car after the fight. 

He said nothing on the way home, while Jin's hand was on his thigh, thumb rubbing soft circles into the flesh as Jin ranted about the night. 

He said nothing as Jin parked his car in Namjoon's spot, all too familiar with his apartment and everything that encompasses it. The place feeling more like home than his own home did. 

He said nothing as he waited for Jin to come out of the shower, hearing his surprisingly melodic voice through the door. 

He said nothing as Jin walked up to the bed with damp hair, throwing the already wet towel on top of the chair in front of the dressing table, getting into bed with Namjoon. 

"Did you enjoy the night?" Jin asked, as he pulled the covers off the bed, getting comfortable as he settled on top of the mattress, next to Namjoon, oblivious, "I thought it was good, aside from the last fight, but I think I handled it well. Though I swear if they do this the next time, I-"

Namjoon couldn't hold back anymore. He couldn't pretend like everything was okay when it was not. 

"When were you going to tell me?" Namjoon said, cutting Jin off, leaning against the headboard.

"What?" 

"About Jimin working for Yoongi and you," Namjoon said, "When were you going to tell me? Just how much does he know Jin?" 

"What did he tell you?" Jin said, eyes darkening. 

"He didn't tell me anything! And neither did you! That's the problem!" 

"How did you find out?" Jin asked. 

"It doesn't matter! What matters is that I didn't find out from you!" Namjoon almost screamed, "What don't I know? What else am I being kept in the dark about, Jin?!" 

Jin didn't say anything. He didn't know what to say. If Jimin didn't tell Namjoon, then who did? Who else knows? 

"You promised me after you told me about the underground boxing that you would be honest with me," Namjoon continued, almost resigned, "I can't do this if you aren't honest. I can't be with you." 

"Should I leave?" Jin asked, hoping that he would say no, begging with his eyes for Namjoon to let him stay.

But in his heart, he knew, Jin wasn't supposed to be happy. These few months that he had spent with Namjoon with a smile on his face was a facade. Jin wasn't meant for happiness. He was the leader of a gang. That was his one and only role in life - To lead a gang. Nothing else. Happiness, love, peace, life...Those things were only something he could dream of and never attain. 

"You're not even going to explain yourself?"

"It took you two days to even want to see me after I told you about the underground boxing, Joon," Jin said, "You're not going to want to hear the whole story." 

A wave of fear hit Namjoon. Not fear of Jin, but fear of what he was hiding. 

"Are you leaving?" Namjoon asked, reluctantly. 

"I don't know how I could stay." 

"You said that you would fight for us, and now that one small argument comes up, you're running?" 

"This isn't small, Joonie-" 

"Don't call me that if you're just going to leave!" Namjoon shouted, tears springing in his eyes. 

"If I tell you this, you're not going to want me to stay," Jin warned. 

"That's for me to decide, not you." 

Jin let out a resigned sigh, knowing that this was inevitable; that telling Namjoon was something that he had to do. He was going to do it anyway, but now, he didn't have a choice. 

"Before I say anything," Jin said, "I just need you to know that I love you, and I was going to tell you sooner or later an-" 

"Just tell me." Namjoon said, cutting him off. 

"How familiar are you with the Kim Clan?" Jin asked, ripping the band aid off. 

"The gang that terrorises the cit- oh." Namjoon said, putting two and two together. 

Jin waited. He didn't know what kind of reaction to expect, so he prepared himself for every sort of reaction that his brain could conjure up in the two seconds that it took for Namjoon to realise. 

"Y-You're in the Kim Clan?" Namjoon stuttered.

"I'm their leader." 

"Kim Seokjin. Kim Clan." Namjoon thought out loud. 

"Yes." Jin said, feeling like he had to say something. 

"And the underground boxing...Is that just a cover up?" 

"No," Jin answered, shaking his head, "Think of it like a mixer party. Gangs come there to place bets, scout out new members, see how strong they are compared to other gangs. Some people come for fun. Others come to get high...But I organise everything, well my gang and I do." 

"And JK?" 

"Jungkook. His name is Jungkook," Jin said, "He's like a little brother to me." 

"And he fights." Namjoon said, stating the obvious. 

"I don't force him to," Jin cleared up, "He fights because he wants to, not for any other reason. If he wanted to stop, he knows that he can, no questions asked. But he's the best of the best. Unbeatable. You've seen that." 

"And Yoongi and Jimin?" 

"What about them?" 

"Are they part of the gang too?" 

"Jimin isn't," Jin said, knowing that Namjoon cared more about that than Yoongi, a person he's only met a handful of times. "Yoongi is." 

"Jimin knows, doesn't he?" Namjoon said, more than he asked. 

"He does." 

"More than me?" 

"Yes." Jin said, curtly. 

In a pained voice, Namjoon asked, "Were you ever going to tell me?" 

"I was, Joo-Namjoon. I promise I was," Jin said, getting closer to him, needing to feel his warmth, needing to reassure him, "I wanted to ease you into this world and not throw you off the deep end like I was. I wanted to let you see for yourself if you wanted to be a part of this world, rather than force you to be." 

"So tell me!" Namjoon said, almost begging, "Tell me everything! From the beginning." 

"Okay." Jin agreed, nodding, almost reluctantly, "And after, you can tell me if you want to be with me or not." 

He agreed, biting his bottom lip, knowing that this conversation could change everything between them. It was going to, one way or another. Even if he wasn't ready for it.

"It all started when I met Jungkook and Yoongi. I don't know how we became best friends, but we just did..." 

 

~~~

 

Jungkook was sore. Very, very sore. He was in a little pain too, but that wasn't something that he would ever admit to anyone, much less himself. That was why he was sat in his apartment, rather than at the gym, training for the next fight. 

It's not like he hated being alone, but there was something about being alone and confused about your feelings, while also sore and a little annoyed, that wasn't sitting well with him. He was sore, and incredibly annoyed at his performance in the fight last night. What's worse was that there were bruises almost littering his skin. He hated bruises. 

More than that, he had admitted his feelings about Jimin. 

Feelings. Vulnerability. Love. 
These weren't things that he was familiar with. If you asked him about boxing or guns, or knives, Jungkook would talk your head off about them. But these feelings were unfamiliar territory. Jimin, was unfamiliar territory. 

What scared Jungkook the most was the fact that every single time he was with Jimin, he was happy. And that could be taken away from him in a second. It's happened before, and he didn't want to go through that again. It scared him. Admitting that was hard on him too. 

A lot of things were confusing to him, but if he was being incredibly honest with himself, if it's Jimin, he was willing to try. He was willing to try, and learn, and improve. Because Jimin was worth it. Jimin is worth it.

Jungkook's ears perked up when he heard his doorbell ring twice, effectively pulling him out of his thoughts. He sighed, knowing that it was Yoongi at the door. 

Reluctantly, he got off the couch, placing his laptop down onto the table and walked to the door.

"Goddamnit Yoongi! I told you that I was fine and didn't need any help-" He yelled, pulling the door open with brute strength. 

"That's probably why he sent me." Jimin said with a big smile, two plastic bags in hand.

Jungkook's face softened almost immediately, voice dropping barely over a whisper, "What are you doing here?" 

"I come bearing gifts," Jimin said, holding the bags up, "Can I come in?" 

Jungkook quickly moved out of the way, making space for a smiley Jimin as he entered the apartment, heading straight for the kitchen. 

"I heard you weren't feeling that great, so I got your favourites," He said, as Jungkook closed the door, trailing closely behind him, "I went to that cafe that you took me to, and asked for hot chocolate with extra whipped cream and marshmallows, a red velvet cupcake and a brownie. I would have gotten the ice cream but it would have melted on the way, so I just asked for more marshmallows. But that's probably for my benefit and not yours." 

"You really are an angel," Jungkook thought out loud. 

"I prefer the term fairy," Jimin said with a giggle, laying out everything on the bar counter.

Jungkook took a opposite him, the pain, confusion and anger gone, as if it was never there in the first place. 

"Well," Jimin said, passing him a plastic fork, "Dig in." 

Jimin tried to seem nonchalant, leaning against the bar counter, opposite Jungkook, as he took a bite of the cupcake, "Do you want to talk about it?" 

"Talk about what?" Jungkook asked, mouth slightly full as he chewed on the bite of the cupcake, hand on the disposable cup that held the hot chocolate. 

"What's got you sad." 

"Not really," Jungkook said with a shrug, trying to play it cool. 

"Okay," Jimin nodded, not wanting to push him, changing the topic, "I talked to Hoseok today. A real heart to heart." 

"What about?" 

"How he joined the gang," Jimin explained, eyeing the brownie. 

"And? What did you find out?" 

"A lot." Jimin said, unable to find the right words to express his opinion. 

"I have a lot of respect for him," Jungkook said, "We've all come from very different backgrounds, but he's the only one that holds no resentment towards anything that life has thrown him. It takes a big person to be able to forgive and to make the best out of the circumstances that he's been given." 

"He really is like the sun," Jimin commented. 

"Ironic, given he moves like water." Jungkook said with a smile on his face, taking a bite out of the frosting of the cupcake. 

"You've seen him dance?" 

"We've had a couple of sessions." 

"You dance too?!" Jimin asked excitedly. 

"I do." 

"The three of us should dance some time!" Jimin said, exuding childlike excitement. 

"Sure, Jiminie." Jungkook said with a laugh. 

They sat in silence for all of thirty seconds, Jimin trying to hold his tongue, but failing. 

"Is there something you want to say?" Jungkook asked, cocking an eyebrow, looking at Jimin's scrunched up face, "Because you look constipated." 

"I want to ask something, but I don't want to cross a line." He confessed. 

"By now you should know that you can ask anything you want, especially if you're asking me." Jungkook reassured, sincerity lacing his every word.

"But this question isn't about you." Jimin warned.

"Ask me, Jiminie." 

Something about the way he said Jimin's name made Jimin's heart both skip a beat and then speed up. At this rate, he was going to have to see cardiologist. The softness of his name, the way that Jimin had never felt more at home, the way he could just walk in here without feeling like awkward and like he was 'just a guest'. He had fallen. He knew he had. 

"It's about Yoongi and Hoseok," Jimin said, clearing his throat slightly, trying not to think anymore.

"What about them?" 

"What are they?" He asked, "I keep thinking that they're together, but they're not?" 

"Not exactly?" Jungkook said, more like a question, "They love each other, very, very much. They're both together and not together at the same time. They don't call each other their boyfriend, but they don't mind if other people do." 

"So, they're together?" Jimin asked, confused. 

"Pretty much. But without the label." Jungkook said with a shrug, used to it. 

"Is that something that gang members do often?" Jimin asked. 

"I think that they do that for protection." Jungkook said.

"Their own or for their partner?" 

"A bit of both?" Jungkook said, unsure himself, "It's a way of protecting the other person so it seems that you have no attachments, therefore keeping the other person safe and out of harms way. But also a method of protection for yourself. You're fooling yourself into thinking that you have no weaknesses, and that nothing affects you, when in reality you're whipped as hell." 

Jimin focused on the crumbs of the brownie, as he asked his next question, "Is that something you would do?" 

"What?" 

"No labels." 

Jungkook had a smirk on his face, knowing very well what Jimin was asking, "Depends on the person." 

"Good to know." Jimin said, putting the plastic fork in his mouth that had nothing on it. 

"I wouldn't if it was you." Jungkook said, not holding back anymore.

He wasn't going to deny himself happiness any longer. He was willing to try. For Jimin. Only for Jimin.

"W-What?" Jimin said, eyes doubling in size, head snapping up to look at Jungkook.

"I wouldn't hide if it was you," Jungkook said, eyes never leaving Jimin's, "I wouldn't keep things vague if it was us." 

"O-Oh." Jimin stuttered, "I-Is that something you uhh, think about often?" 

"You?" 

"Us." 

"Yes." Jungkook said with a nod, "I think about you a lot. I think about us a lot." 

In a small voice, almost as if embarrassed, Jimin said, "I do too." 

"Us?" 

"You. Us. All of it." Jimin said. 

Jungkook stood up from his seat, "And?" 

"And what?" Jimin said, dropping his fork, eyes following Jungkook's every move, from the way he got off the chair, to the way he moved closer to Jimin. 

"And what do you think about it?" Jungkook asked, now standing in front of Jimin, hands by waists, gripping the counter, trapping him in between the counter and Jungkook's body. 

"I don't resent the idea," Jimin teased, trying to gain the upper hand. 

"I'm glad I don't repulse you." 

"Quite the opposite actually," Jimin told him. 

"Oh, is that right?" Jungkook said, leaning in slowly. 

"You're still hurt," Jimin said, hand reaching up to brush over the bruises on his jaw. 

"I'll live." 

"I don't want to hurt you." Jimin said, eyes on the bruises. 

"You're the one person that I'm convinced won't hurt me." Jungkook said with conviction. 

Jimin had to hold back a gasp, guilt washing over him again. If only Jungkook knew. If he did...his whole opinion of Jimin would change. He would hate him. 

But Jimin didn't want to think about that right now. He pushed the feeling down, pushed the thoughts aside as he focused on Jungkook's eyes. It was becoming his favourite sight in the whole world. 

Jimin brought his hand to Jungkook's cheek, thumb brushing over his soft cheek. He had to make a decision, right here, right now. He had to decide if this was worth it. If a relationship with Jungkook was worth the risk. If he was going to do this, he would be risking himself, the undercover mission, Namjoon, Taehyung...Jungkook. He would be risking losing Jungkook. He was already so, incredibly deep. But if he took this next step, then there would be no going back. 

And maybe that's what Jimin wanted. He was what Jimin wanted. 

Jimin leaned in, throwing all caution to the wind, deciding right then and there that Jungkook was worth losing everything and more. 

The kiss was soft, languid, nothing like their previous kisses. They moved passionately against each other, communicating feelings that they thought they were going to have to live with silently. Jungkook's hand was on his waist and Jimin's, was around his neck, playing with the hairs on the nape of his neck. Soon, the need for more took over, and they ended up with Jungkook's hands on the back of Jimin's thighs as he hoisted him up onto the bar counter, pushing him against it, licking into his mouth as Jimin pulled him closer, and closer, as if that was even possible. 

Jungkook pulled back, panting, resting his forehead against Jimin's. 

"Bedroom. Now." Jimin panted, desperately. 

"Jimin, I-" 

"I want you, Kook, please." Jimin whined, "I need you. Make me yours." 

"Fuck, baby," Jungkook groaned, pulling his legs closer to the edge of the counter as Jimin wrapped them around his waist. Jungkook's hands found purchase at the back of his thighs as he lifted Jimin off the counter, walking him into the bedroom. 

Jimin couldn't help the wave of arousal that rushed through him from the show of strength, as he buried his face in Jungkook's neck, sucking, biting and licking any inch of exposed skin that he could find, marking him. 

The next thing Jimin knew, he was being thrown on the soft mattress, with Jungkook towering over him, lust and adoration in his eyes. Jungkook pulled off his own shirt, throwing it on the floor, his erection hard in his grey sweatpants. Jimin licked his lips, before biting down on his plump, pink bottom lip, raking his eyes over Jungkook's toned and defined torso. He got on his knees, on the edge of the bed, right in front of Jungkook's crotch, waiting. 

"What, baby? What do you want?" Jungkook said, carding his fingers through Jimin's hair, pulling it slightly, revelling in the moans escaping Jimin's mouth. 

"My dick? Is that it?" He said, tone hard and low, only adding to Jimin's arousal.

"Words, baby boy. Use your words." Jungkook said, pulling Jimin's hair slightly to tilt his head up.

"Y-Yes," Jimin said. 

"Yes what?" Jungkook demanded. 

"Yes I want your dick." Jimin replied, hand ghosting over the outline of Jungkook's hardness over his sweatpants. 

Jungkook let go of Jimin's hair, "Take what you want, baby." 

Jimin's eyes lit up, and he immediately leaned forward, mouthing over the tip of Jungkook's cock, fabric wet with his saliva. His stare was dark as he kept his eyes on Jimin, almost full of promise at what he was about to do. Jimin's hand slowly worked on him through the fabric, palm moving up and down as he teased the head of Jungkook's cock with his mouth, making him needy for more. Jungkook's hand slid back into Jimin's hair, fisting it, pulling him off his sweatpants, making him look up at Jungkook's eyes that was now dark. Jimin felt nothing but sheer lust filled adrenaline, knowing the effect he had on Jungkook.

"Keep teasing me and I'll make sure you won't be able to walk for a week." 

The offer tempted Jimin, and it showed in his face. Jungkook chuckled lowly, releasing the grip he had on Jimin's hair. 

Jimin's needs became too much as he pulled Jungkook's sweatpants down to mid thigh, his hard cock red and leaking with pre cum. Jimin gave the tip of his cock a kittenish lick, swirling his tongue around just the head, gaining more and more confidence from the noises that were escaping Jungkook. He gave a long swipe from the tip to the underside of the cock and back up again, and without warning, took Jungkook's whole hardness into his mouth.

"Put your hands behind your back." Jungkook demanded in a low voice. 

Jimin's hands immediately dropped from Jungkook's cock, clasping themselves behind his back as Jungkook fisted Jimin's hair. Spit pooled around Jimin's mouth, as he slackened his jaw, ready for Jungkook to use and abuse his mouth. 

"You're going to take me all the way, alright baby?" Jungkook said in a sweet voice, rough hands in Jimin's hair, the juxtaposition sending chills down Jimin's spine as he felt his hard cock strain further in his denim jeans. Jimin grinded himself, needing any sort of friction he could get. 

"Maybe if you're good enough, I'll even let you cum, but for now you're just my good little cocksleeve, aren't you, sweetheart?" Jungkook said, noticing Jimin's impatience. 

Jimin moaned around Jungkook's cock, feeling it hot and heavy in his mouth, the fact that he was being used as a cocksleeve only added to his arousal. He loved the fact that he was at Jungkook's mercy, not knowing what he would do next. But Jimin knew that even while Jungkook was saying all of this, he adored him. He could see it in his eyes. Jimin trusted Jungkook enough to take care of him, and Jungkook would never hurt him. 

"Tap my thigh twice if you need to stop," Jungkook told him, one hand coming down to brush Jimin's cheek gently, before it slid back up into his hair, gripping it, and pulling it.

Jungkook guided Jimin deep onto his cock, slowly, letting Jimin get used to the feeling, until his nose brushed the slight dusting of hair on his pelvic bone. He held him there, feeling Jimin's throat contract around his dick, throwing his head back in pleasure, before he pulled him off with a hiss. Jimin coughed and spluttered, spit all over his cheeks and chin. Jungkook looked down at him, and Jimin nodded, telling him that he was okay with lust bloomed eyes. 

Jungkook pushed Jimin back onto his dick, fucking his throat, the lewd sounds of spit and gagging only adding to his arousal. His moans turned into pants at the stimulation of Jimin's hot, wet mouth combined with the contraction of his throat. Jungkook looked down at Jimin, seeing the tears in his eyes and the spit pooling around his mouth and cheeks and the stretch of his dick around his plump, soft, pink lips, and Jungkook swears that if he died now, he would be a happy man.

"Shit baby, you're so fucking good. What a good boy, fuck!" 

Fuck, this was all he wanted. He wanted to see Jimin ruined, with tears leaking down his face and his dick in his mouth. 

He pulled Jimin off of him, not wanting to cum just yet. He watched as Jimin sucked in greedy breaths of air, looking up at Jungkook, waiting for his next move. Pliant. Jimin was so, so pliant and Jungkook fucking loved it. 

Jungkook leaned down, capturing Jimin's soft, wet, plump lips in a heated kiss, pushing him back down onto the bed. He leaned back, pulling Jimin's shirt off of him, mouthing at his jaw, then his neck, and his chest, taking one of Jimin's nippled into his mouth while the other hand flicked, pressed and pinched the other nipple. Jimin arched up, sensitive, whiny, needing more stimulation. 

"Patience, sweetheart," Jungkook said, almost teasingly, loving that Jimin was at his mercy, and his alone.

"Jungkook." Jimin breathed out, lust dropping with every syllable, the sound of his needy moan shooting straight to Jungkook's dick, making it twitch. One of Jimin's hands fists Jungkook's hair, bringing his lips back to his in a needy, lusty filled kiss, grinding his lower half into Jungkook's, the friction from the jeans, making both of them moan into the kiss.

"Please." Jimin whispers as Jungkook pulls away.

"What baby? Please, what?" Jungkook asks, thumbing at Jimin's sensitive nipple, making him hiss in pleasure.

"Fuck me." Jimin pants, arching his back into Jungkook, grinding his jeans into him, needing him to know how needy he was.

Jungkook pulls away, unbuttoning Jimin's jeans, pulling it down just enough to see his straining erection through his boxers. He palms hard, stroking him through the fabric of his underwear. 

"Please, please," Jimin moaned, not even knowing what he was begging for anymore. 

Jungkook pulled off his jeans and underwear and throw them to one side, leaning back and admiring Jimin's toned body, licking his lips. 

"Fuck baby, you're so beautiful. Fucking look how gorgeous you are, all laid out just for me." 

"Just for you," Jimin moans at the praise, almost arching up, loving the way the praises sound. 

Jungkook runs his hands over Jimin's thighs, teasing him by going just close enough to his leaking, drooling cock, but never touching it. 

"Turn around for me, baby," Jungkook orders. 

Jungkook gets off the bed, reaching for the side drawer, grabbing the lube and the condom, turning back around to see Jimin with his face down and ass up, waiting for Jungkook's next orders. Jungkook almost creams himself at the sight, but holds it, knowing that if anything, he wanted to feel Jimin around him before he blows his load. 

"Fucking gorgeous." Jungkook exclaimed, running his hand over Jimin's plump ass, bringing it back and smacking it, the noise bouncing off the walls, as he watched it ripple. Jimin whimpered. 

"You like that, don't you baby? You like being spanked." Jungkook observed, smacking Jimin once more, hearing the delicious. whimper mixed with a moan. 

Jungkook smacks him three more times in succession, watching his ass bloom a bright, deep red, before soothing it with his palm. 

"The things I want to do to you..." Jungkook said, shaking his head as he bit his lip, already picturing Jimin a needy, whining, moaning mess beneath him.

"Do them." Jimin said, cheek against the sheet, "All of them, fuck, Jungkook please. I need you." 

Jungkook placed both his hands on Jimin's ass, thumbs brushing over the swell of them as he spread his cheeks, leaning in and placing a kiss over the puckered rim. 

Jimin moaned in anticipation, cock hanging flush in between his thighs, leaking and needy.

Jungkook sweeps the flat of his tongue over Jimin's rim, feeling him shake beneath him. He licks inside and Jimin spreads his knees further, allowing him to delve his tongue deeper. Jimin whines and moans, the heat of the noise making Jungkook's dick twitch. Jungkook holds Jimin up, his tongue deep in Jimin, spreading him, licking against the tight, hot walls, mind spinning with just how amazing his dick would feel in him. 

 

Jungkook pulls back, slicking his fingers up with lube before slowly circling Jimin's rim, loose enough for two fingers. 

"Fuck, Kook, please, more," Jimin begs, sticking his ass up further, practically riding Jungkook's fingers. Jungkook adds a third, thrusting them hard and deep, trying to find Jimin's prostate. He smirks when Jimin lets out a long, drawled up moan, knowing that he found it.

"N-Need your cock." Jimin moaned. 

Jungkook slowly twisted his fingers out of Jimin, watching as his rim clenched and unclenched at air. Jimin fell back on the bed without Jungkook holding him up and rutted and grinded against the sheets, needing any friction he could get on his leaking cock. Jungkook watched Jimin desperately searching for stimulation as he rolled the condom on himself, slicking his hard length up, stroking himself a few times, biting down on his bottom lip at the delicious sight that was a needy Jimin. 

Jungkook couldn't take it anymore. He needed to feel Jimin. He needed to be in him. With one hand under Jimin's hip, supporting him, and another on his cock, he lined himself him, pushing just the tip in, almost teasingly.

"Yes! Yes! Fuck me! Stretch me! Use me! Fuck please." Jimin whined, begged, pleaded for more, wanting Jungkook to ruin him. He wanted to feel Jungkook with every step he took. 

Jungkook fingers dig into Jimin's hips, bruising, as he sinks his cock deep into the tight, wet heat. Jungkook lets Jimin get used to the stretch. 

"Move, please." Jimin mumbled, hands fisting the sheets. 

Jungkook pistons his hips, fucking into Jimin's wet heat, hearing the lewd squelching sound of the lube mixed with Jimin's high pitched moans and groans of faster and harder. 

"So good, baby," Jungkook praises, rocking forward while pulling Jimin back, his balls slapping the skin every time, "So fucking tight for me."

"Harder Kook, please, almost there." Jimin moans, rocking back himself, face buried in the sheets, tears leaking out at the stimulation. 

"You're going to cum untouched for me." Jungkook said, "Cum all over yourself, just from my cock."

Jungkook stars fucking into him faster, harder. One hand sliding up Jimin's back, fisting itself into Jimin's hair, pulling him up from the sheets, facing the headboard as Jungkook pounds into him from the back. 

"C-Close," Jimin drawls out, moans filling the room. 

Jungkook could feel his own heat, tight and heavy in his gut.

A few more thrusts is all is takes as JImin lets out a long string of lewd moans as he cums all over himself, hitting his stomach and the base of his chin, face falling on top of the sheets as Jungkook lets go of his hair, chasing his own high. 

Jimin clenches around Jungkook, tightening up on his cock. That combined with the moans spilling from Jimin was all it took to drive Jungkook over the edge, cumming into the condom, stilling inside Jimin's wet, and unbelievably tight heat.

It takes a while for either one of them to move, both coming down from their highs, panting over each other. Jungkook moved first, slowly pulling himself out of Jimin, rolling the condom off, tying it at the end before throwing it in the dustbin. He walked over to the bathroom and wiped himself off, throwing it to the floor before grabbing a new one from the cupboard beneath the sink. He walked over to Jimin and slowly wiped him clean, a smile on both of their faces - Jimin watching while Jungkook cleaned him off. It seemed oddly domestic to Jimin, but he wasn't complaining. 

Jungkook threw the soiled towel to one side, deciding to worry about later before he climbed into bed, holding his arm out. Jimin snuggled into his chest, as Jungkook pulled him closer, rubbing soft, small circles into his smooth skin. 

Jimin looked up at him, adoration in his eyes, "Hi." 

"Hey baby," Jungkook said. He didn't know why he did it, but it took them both by surprise when Jungkook leaned down, placing a soft kiss into his hair, "Was I too rough?" 

"You were perfect." Jimin said, enjoying the bliss of their post orgasm haze. 

"Jimin?" Jungkook said, heart beating just a little faster. 

"Hmm?" He hummed, content. 

"I don't want this to be a one time thing."

"Oh." Jimin said, "So, umm, like fuck buddies then?" 

"No!" Jungkook immediately corrected, "I want to do this with you - The whole hearts, flowers and feelings. I want to be with you." 

"Be together...as in..." 

"Boyfriends." Jungkook said, "If you'll have me." 

Jimin sat up a little, looking Jungkook deep in his eyes and said, "If you think that after I basically poured my heart out to you yesterday, told you that I thought about us constantly, and after you literally just came in my ass, that I wouldn't have you, then you're an idiot." 

Jungkook grinned, giddy with happiness.

"You're an idiot," Jimin said, shaking his head, fond. 

"Yeah, but I'm your idiot now." Jungkook proclaimed. 

Jimin rolled his eyes playfully, leaning back into Jungkook's chest. He reached over, taking one of Jungkook's hands into his, playing with his fingers as they cuddled, happy in their little bubble. 

"Jimin." Jungkook called out. 

"Yeah?" 

"I'm not good at this," He warned. 

"What?" 

"Relationships. I'm not good at it." Jungkook said, insecure.

"Neither am I," Jimin said, "But that's the fun part,isn't it? Figuring it out together." 

"What if I screw up?" 

"What if I do?" Jimin said. 

"We'll figure it out," Jungkook said, hopeful. 

"Together." Jimin told him.

A beat of silence passed before Jimin spoke up.

"Through thick and thin, and everything in between." Jimin proclaimed, intertwining their fingers together like a promise. 

"What's that?" Jungkook asked, staring at him with wide, shimmering eyes. 

"I told myself that if I ever found someone that I care about, like truly care about, that I would make them promise me something," Jimin explained, looking at their entangled, intertwined fingers in fascination, "I would make them promise to stay with me through thick and thin, and everything in between. To never leave my side when times are tough, to laugh with me when things are easy. But most importantly, to never give up in between, or at all." 

He looked up at Jungkook with fondness, love, adoration all at once. 

"Through thick and thin.." Jimin said, squeezing Jungkook's hand.

"And everything in between." Jungkook finished, promising in his heart and he would never give up. He was in this for the long haul, whatever might come; they could get through it together. 

Chapter Text

Happy. 

Jungkook is so happy. Just lying here in his bed with Jimin on his chest, talking about anything and everything in their little bubble, was everything to him. He must have broken some kind of record, because since he was able to call Jimin his, he hasn't stopped smiling. It's been days and yet, every single time he even caught a glimpse of the colour pink, a smile would grow on his face and never leave. 

Something had changed and he didn't know what it was. Something was different. It couldn't just be chalked up to happiness right? There had to be something else. There had to be an explanation for how different things started to seem. 

Jungkook had caught himself humming a tune when he was doing the randomest things, like tying his shoes. He's caught himself smiling for no reason at all. He's greeted people on the street with a smile or a nod, which he had never done before. Even colours seem brighter now! He had never noticed how blue the sky was, or how sunrises are a blend of colours that painted the sky. Were his shoes always this shade of blue? He could have sworn that days ago there weren't flowers on the path that he used to walk to the gym, but now that he's seen them, he can't help but notice them. Once, he even caught himself smiling at the flowers, wanting them to grow bigger so that he could show Jimin. He knows that it would put a smile on his face. 

And that's all that matters. That Jimin's smiling. 

And maybe that's the explanation for why things were different - Jimin. He's the answer. 

"Where did you get this?" Jimin asked, thumb gently ghosting over the scar on his lower abdomen, head on Jungkook's chest.

"What? This?" Jungkook asked, leaning up to look at where Jimin was pointing to., arm around Jimin's waist, while his other arm was behind his head.

"Yeah," Jimin said, voice barely over a whisper, "Looks painful." 

"It doesn't hurt." Jungkook reassured, thumbing small, gentle circles into his waist, absentmindedly.

"It looks like it did," Jimin said, "Looks deep."

"It's okay now, baby," Jungkook told him, fond smile on his face. 

"How did you get it?" 

"Got stabbed." Jungkook said. 

"How?" 

Jungkook sighed as he recalled the situation. He'd never actually opened up to anyone before. 

"You don't have to-" Jimin said, retracting his hand as if he'd been burned. 

"I want to." Jungkook said, catching his hand, intertwining his fingers with Jimin's, "It's just that I've never talked to anyone before...Never really told anyone much, actually." 

"Not even Yoongi?" 

"Yoongi doesn't ask questions," Jungkook said, "He's just always been there." 

"Even when you got this." 

"I'd say that he's been there for about 75 percent of the bruises and scars on my body." Jungkook told him.

"And the rest?" 

"I got before I met him." Jungkook said, lowering his gaze, "I wouldn't be here, alive, without him, actually. I think he knows that, which is why he doesn't ask questions." 

"Do you want to talk about it?" Jimin asked, softly. 

"Do you want to listen?" Jungkook asked, warning him, "It's dark." 

"Through thick and thin, and everything in between," Jimin reminded him, squeezing his hand. 

Jungkook leaned down, pressing a kiss into Jimin's hair, somehow needing that reassurance that he wasn't going to leave. That he was real, and he was with him, right here, right now. That Jungkook wasn't back in the situation that he was when he was younger. 

"I don't know where to start," Jungkook admitted. 

"Take your time Kookie," Jimin said, nuzzling into his chest, "I'm not going anywhere." 

And that was all Jungkook needed. 

"I had a great childhood! An amazing one! We were happy my parents and I. It was perfect. Things were perfect....And then my dad died. I was only 10 when he died. I still remember the day so, so clearly. My mom was sitting on my bed as she tucked me in, reading me a story. The landline rang and she kissed my forehead before moving to answer the phone. And the next thing I remember, I was at the hospital and my mom was crying on the floor." Jungkook said, face contorting as if he was reliving the day over again, "Things just went south from there. She stopped reading me bedtime stories, or tucking me in at night. She stopped giving me kisses in the morning, or before bed. She barely got out of bed, or ate, or cooked anymore." 

He sighed, closing his eyes, swallowing harshly. 

"I thought that was the worst of it, but it wasn't. She stopped taking care of herself, and she could barely look at me. She said I reminded her too much of him, and that it hurt. It hurt to be in the same house as me, it hurt to be in the same room as me, and it hurt to even look at me. I looked too much like him, I sounded too much like him, I breathed like him, I had the same smile as him....To her, I was him. I was my dad. But I wasn't....I was just a kid who lost his dad and was now losing his mom too." Jungkook said, voice strained, as if he was talking through a lump that was only growing in his throat, "Just when I thought that things couldn't get worse, my mom started drinking. And that drinking turned into drugs. It was like she was trying to fill this void in her heart that was only getting deeper and deeper, and nothing that she did worked. She started bringing home different guys, moving from one to another, dropping them like flies. She was trying to recreate what she had with my dad, and nothing seemed to be working out. She would always find faults with them." 

Jungkook scoffed, "She was trying to find a man like my dad, but could barely look at her own son because he reminded her too much of the man that she lost. She finally found someone, though. I was 14 when she first brought him home. He would try everything he could to impress her, starting with me. It was just before Christmas when he realised that she didn't care about me. And then he stopped trying. He quickly realised that nothing I did mattered to her, because to her, I didn't exist. I was just a maid to her. Someone to do the grocery shopping, and cook, and clean, and even pay bills. I wasn't her son. Her son died along with her husband." 

He took a shaky breath, needing a moment to collect himself. Jimin squeezed his hand, reminding him that he wasn't alone. 

"You know what's funny?" Jungkook said, "There's a word for when a woman loses a husband, and a word for when a child loses both their parents, but there isn't a word for when a woman loses her child. To everyone, she's still a mother. I lost both my parents the day my dad died. But still, my mother lost the most. She lost her husband, and herself. I was still alive, but she couldn't handle it. She couldn't handle the fact that I was becoming more and more like my dad, and that's what broke her. Her boyfriend couldn't handle that my mom still loved another man. A man that he would never be, and a man that my mom could never get. So he took it out on me, the person who looked most like the man my mother loved - My father." 

"He hit you." Jimin said more than he asked. 

He winced, as if reliving every beating, every hit, every time he couldn't defend himself. 

"More than you can imagine." Jungkook said, "I was more bruises than I was skin. I stopped going to school. I stopped hanging out with my friends. I couldn't be at home, but I couldn't be anywhere in the sunlight either; People ask questions. Questions that I don't have the answers to. When I was 15, I couldn't handle it anymore. I saw a flyer for Yoongi's gym and I just showed up. He took one look at me, and asked me just one question - Do you want to learn self defence? And the rest is history." 

"What happened to him? The boyfriend?" Jimin asked. 

"I defended myself, and threw him out on the streets," Jungkook said, "He's just lucky he never raised his hand on my mother. If he did, he wouldn't have hands anymore."

"What about your mom?" 

"She got her wish." Jungkook said, a sad smile on his face, "I never came home. I send her money once a month, almost like an allowance. I don't know what she does with it, but I haven't seen her since I was 15." 

"That's 7 years." Jimin thought out loud. 

Jungkook sighed, "And that is the story of why I'm such a fuck-up." 

"Now you listen to me, Jeon Jungkook," Jimin said, sitting up and turning his head to face him, "In no world are you a 'fuck-up', not if I have anything to say about it. The things that you went through made you the person you are today, scars, bruises and all. You've gone through so much and still was able to come out the other side, stronger and more resilient than ever. You've lived through it and are still alive today to tell the tale. It made you the amazing, strong, kind, caring and loving person you are and that person is in no way a fuck up." 

"If what I went through meant that it led me to you, then maybe I did something right," Jungkook said, caressing Jimin's cheek, looking deep into the honey brown eyes that he had come to love. 

"Damn right you did." Jimin said, leaning into his touch, smile gracing his face. 

"Being with you is the kindest thing I've done for myself," Jungkook told him, voice gentle and soft, almost as if he was scared of ruining what they had. 

Jimin's breath hitched in his throat. No one has ever looked at him the way Jungkook did. His big doe brown eyes, soft and warm, twinkling with an emotion that Jimin couldn't decipher as he held Jimin in his arms, thumb ghosting gently over his cheek, pretty words flowing out of his mouth, sincerity lacing every single syllable. He had fallen. Both of them have. There was no denying that. 

Jimin couldn't hold his gaze, eyes drifting lower to Jungkook's bare torso as he thumbed over the scar again. 

"You never did tell me how you got this," Jimin said, clearing his throat. 

"Mission gone wrong." Jungkook said, "We were raiding another gang's warehouse because they stole drugs from us. I let my guard down, and got too cocky and next thing I know there was a knife in me."

"Drugs?" Jimin asked, mouth agape.

"Yeah, drugs," Jungkook said as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. 

"Oh." 

"We don't take them if that's what you're worried about," Jungkook said, "We don't get high on our own supply. It's rule number one, basic really. Actually, none of us get high at all.... I don't because I've seen what happens, what with my mother and all. Yoongi hates it. Hoseok does too, and Jin, well I guess he just never has the time or luxury to." 

"But other people-" 

"We don't control what the gang does as long as it doesn't interfere with our business." Jungkook told him.

"Okay," Jimin said, nodding. 

"What? Were you worried?" Jungkook asked, almost teasingly. 

"Can't I be?" Jimin said with a cocked eyebrow, "I mean, if I don't worry about my own boyfriend, then who will?" 

"I like when you say that." 

"What?" 

"Boyfriend." Jungkook said with a giggle. 

"We aren't in middle school, Kook!" 

"Boyfriend." Jungkook repeated. 

"You're such a dork." Jimin said, rolling his eyes playfully. 

"Who is? Your boyfriend?" Jungkook said, scrunching his nose, a giggle tumbling from his lips making his eyes scrunch up in happiness. 

 

~~~

 

Jimin and Jungkook had been stealing glances at each other the whole time that they were training, smiling to themselves.

They hadn't told anyone that they were dating yet, as per Jimin's request. He had wanted them to be lowkey until they figured out their place and their groove. Jungkook did tell him that he didn't hide anything from Yoongi, and that if Yoongi asked, he was going to tell him. 

"Okay, that's it!" Yoongi said, dropping the boxing pad that he was holding, stepping away from Jimin. 

"What's wrong?" Jimin asked, "Did I do the move wrongly?" 

"Can you two stop eye-fucking each other?!" Yoongi snapped. 

"W-What?" Jimin stuttered, "We-You think that we-We're not-I mean-" 

"We get it! You're dating! But you don't have to be looking at each other every second of every day! God-" Yoongi started to rant. 

"Babe, lay off them," Hoseok said with an amused smile, "You remember how we were when we first got together." 

"We're not d-dating!" Jimin said, face turning a deep shade on red. 

"Wait, who told you?" Jungkook said. 

"Kook!" Jimin said, turning around to face him, mouth agape. 

"No one needed to tell me! Look at how obvious you're being!" Yoongi scoffed. 

"I thought we were hiding it pretty well..." Jimin mumbled. 

"You walk in here with hickey's all over your body, and stupid goofy smiles, and you expect no one to know?" Yoongi said, rolling his eyes. 

"Were we ever this bad?" Hoseok thought out loud. 

"We were good at hiding it," Yoongi said. 

"I walked in on you two fucking ten times," Jungkook told them, "You weren't good at hiding." 

"He has needs." Was all Hoseok said. 

"I have needs? You keep jumping me!" Yoongi said. 

"I have needs too," Hoseok said with a shrug, looking back at his phone. 

"So, you're not mad?" Jimin piped up. 

"Why would I be mad?" Yoongi asked. 

"I didn't mean to hide it from you, I just-" 

"I told you, what you do with your love life isn't any of my business."  Yoongi shrugged. 

"Even if it is with Jungkook?" Jimin asked, loud enough only for Yoongi to hear. 

Yoongi's face contorted, almost a mix between surprise and fear. No one has ever asked him that before, less of all someone that Jungkook was involved with. All they ever cared about was Jungkook's money, or his dick; never about his feelings. But those people weren't Jimin, and Yoongi had to remind himself of that. He had seen how Jungkook, even in the short amount of time that they have known each other, has changed, immensely. He's been smiling more, and training harder, like he had something to protect. He had been more lively. Happier. Jungkook was happier and that's all that mattered to Yoongi. Nothing else. He just didn't want Jungkook to get hurt. That's all. 

Yoongi might not say it out loud, but he cared for Jungkook, more than anyone knew. He was there when Jungkook was just a defenceless boy, unshed tears brimming his eyes, littered with dark, purple bruises and a determination that he had never seen in anyone before. Yoongi didn't ask questions, not because he didn't want to, but because he was scared to hear the answers. Who would want to hurt him? Who would want to hurt a young doe eyed boy, who was just craving love and affection? That's why Yoongi kept him so close to his heart. Because he wanted to protect him. 

But no one has ever asked him before. So, he never said anything. 

"Let's go again." Yoongi said, clearing his throat, bringing the boxing pad up, waiting for Jimin to swing.

Jimin pulled the gloves back, tightening it, positioning his feet before getting ready to swing. 

There was a loud creak of the front door, followed by a gust of wind. All four of them stopped in their tracks, eyes trained at the door. 

"Namjoon." Jimin gasped. 

"Minnie." He said, mouth in a hard line

"What are you doing here?" He asked, throwing his gloves off into the ring, looking around, worried. 

"Jin is right behind me. He's parking the car." 

"Who is this?" Jungkook asked, narrowing his eyes as he stepped away from the punching bag, walking to stand beside Jimin, suspicious. 

"A friend." Jimin was quick to say, wanting to get Namjoon out of here as soon as possible. 

"Jimin-" 

"Joon can we-" Jimin said, eyeing the door, wanting to push Namjoon out. 

"He knows, Jimin." 

"Knows? Knows what?" Jungkook asked, eyes flittering between all three of them. 

"Everything." Jin said, crossing the floor to stand beside Namjoon. 

"What's going on?" Yoongi asked, practically tasting the tension in the air. 

"Everyone, this is Namjoon." Jin said. 

"The boyfriend." Jungkook said. 

Jin looked at Namjoon, waiting for a confirmation or even a denial...But he said nothing. 

"Friend." Jin corrected. 

"And what is he doing here?" Jimin asked. 

"I told him, everything." 

"Everything as in..." 

"I know about the gang, and the underground boxing ring, and the Hwan Clan and Jin's father. I know about everything." Namjoon said, curtly. 

"Oh." Was all Jimin could muster out, not knowing how to feel or even what to do.

"Why did you bring him here?" Jungkook asked. 

"To show him the gym." Jin said, "To show him everything." 

"You have to be clearer about the whole everything bit, Jin," Hoseok said, crossing his arms over his chest, not fully trusting Namjoon yet.

"Hobi," Jin said, shooting him a look, telling him to stand down, that Namjoon didn't pose a threat. Hobi nodded once, curtly. But still, he was ready, just in case. 

"I'm not going to tell anyone, if that is what everyone is worried about. Neither am I going to call the cops, or anything like that." Namjoon said, softly, "I just wanted to meet you, and to see what Jin's world was truly like. I cannot be in a relationship that is built on a foundation of lies, or omission of the truth." 

"So that's why you're here? To see what we're like?" Hoseok said, cocking an eyebrow, "To see if we're like those stereotypical gang members that you see on the news or in books or movies?"

"Dating someone doesn't just mean dating them alone," Namjoon said, "You're going to be a part of their world, and they're going to be a part of yours. You're dating their friends, and their hobbies, and their families, and their likes and dislikes. If I don't fit into my boyfriend's world, and he doesn't fit into mine, then what's the point of dating." 

"So, now what?" Jimin asked, nervous. 

"The fact that Jin has told me everything and is willing to show me the gym, and his friends, means that he trusts me enough, and is willing to try," Namjoon said with a smile on his face, "And if he can do all of this, then I can surely try too." 

"Does that mean..." Jin said, trailing off, his lips pulling up into a smile. 

Namjoon nodded, "Yeah. Yeah, it does." 

"Welcome to the family!" Jungkook said with a smile. 

Chatter filled the gym as Hoseok, Yoongi and Jungkook started to make conversation with Namjoon, bouncing different topics off each other. Jin and Jimin stayed silent, both looking at each other, knowing that they would have to talk soon. Jin cocked his head to one side, moving, indicating to Jimin that he wanted to talk. Jimin deflated, knowing that this was a conversation he had to go through. 

"Where are you going?" Jungkook asked, as Jimin moved. 

"Bathroom." Jimin said with a small smile, "I'll be right back." 

He walked into the locker room at the back of the gym, spotting Jin easily as he leaned against the wall. 

"I didn't tell him." Was the first thing out of Jimin's mouth. 

"I know you didn't," Jin said. 

"How?" 

"You were just as surprised to see him as I was when I heard that he knew." Jin answered. 

"So, you're not suspecting me at all?" 

"I would be lying if I said I didn't at first," Jin said, tongue in his cheek, "But I trust you." 

"That's a surprise," Jimin said, leaning against the cold metal of the lockers. 

"It was to me too." 

"So, why call me here?" Jimin asked. 

"Because someone told Namjoon." Jin told Jimin. 

"What makes you think I know who?" Jimin said. 

"If I know, then shouldn't you?" Jin said, cocking an eyebrow.

"If you know then why are you asking me? Why don't you go confront them yourself?" 

"Oh come on, Jimin, you can't be that thick headed," Jin scoffed. 

"Stop beating around the bush and come right out and say what you want to say." Jimin snapped. 

"Taehyung." Jin said, "Bring him to the gym tomorrow." 

"No." 

"No?" 

"Don't get Taehyung involved in this." Jimin said, putting his foot down. 

"He's already involved! He's been involved since he found out and there's only one person who would tell him, isn't there?" Jin said. 

"He doesn't know anything." 

"He knows enough to tell Namjoon." Jin said through gritted teeth. 

"Jin, please he-" 

"What did I tell you would happen if you told someone about us, huh?" Jin said, words harsh, stepping closer with every word he spoke, "The only reason you aren't lying dead in a ditch somewhere is because of Namjoon." 

Jimin gulped harshly, fear washing over him.

Jin stepped closer to him, eyes narrowed dangerously.

"Bring me Taehyung tomorrow, or even Namjoon won't be able to save you." Was all Jin said before walking out of the locker room. 

 

~~~

 

"Minnie? You in here?" Taehyung called out as he entered Jimin's apartment. 

"What the fuck did you do?" Jimin said, walking out of his bedroom. 

"I mean, work ran late and I-" 

"You told Namjoon." Jimin said. 

"I-I didn't mean to but I-" 

"Taehyung, you had one job! One job! Keep your mouth fucking shut and you couldn't even do that!" Jimin said, hanging his head in his hands, "You have no idea the shit-storm you just caused." 

"What happened?" 

"Namjoon knows everything now - The Hwan Clan, the drugs, the boxing...He knows everything." 

"Isn't that a good thing?" Taehyung asked. 

"No. He's close now. Too close." 

"What? What are you talking about?" 

"This was never supposed to be like this, Tae!" Jimin said, panicking, pacing back and forth, "It was only supposed to be me. I was the only one who was meant to get the information. In and out. That was the plan. It was never supposed to be like this." 

"Jimin, what are you talking about?" Taehyung said, confused. 

"Namjoon's with Jin and now he knows everything! I'm with Jungkook and now you..." Jimin said, not making any sense. 

"There is a lot to unpack in that sentence..." Taehyung thought out loud, "But let's start small." 

Jimin kept pacing, nervous energy taking over. 

"Stop, Jimin!" Taehyung said, reaching out to still him, "Stop!" 

"Tae..." Jimin whined. 

"Look, we can figure this out, just calm down." 

"We can't. We're fucked." 

"Look, Namjoon is dating Jin. He was bound to find out one way or another. With or without you." Taehyung said. 

"I'm dating Jungkook." 

"What?" 

"I'm dating Jungkook," Jimin repeated, "And I slept with him too." 

"When?" 

"A few days back..." Jimin admitted in a small voice. 

"Jimin, what are you doing?" Taehyung asked, disappointment in his voice. 

"Jin wants you to come to the gym tomorrow." Jimin said in an attempt to change the conversation. 

"I'll be there." 

"He's going to ask you how you know." 

"That's not important right now." Taehyung said. 

"Tae-" 

"Dating Jungkook was never on the table." 

"It just happened..." Jimin said in a small voice. 

"When did you last update the document?" Taehyung asked. 

"What?" 

"In case you forgot, you're in that gym for a reason - Your job. You're not in there to fuck or find a relationship. You're there to save your job." Taehyung said crudely, "You have half a month left, Jimin." 

"He's not just some fuck!" Jimin defended. 

"Out of that whole fucking sentence that is the one thing you pick out?!" Taehyung scoffed, "You're blatantly ignoring the fact that you've gotten yourself deeper and deeper in this whole gang that you've forgotten your one purpose." 

"You think I forgot?! You think that I like the way I feel every single time I step foot into that gym?!" Jimin spat out, "I feel fucking guilty okay! Those people treat me like family and all I'm doing is gathering information to save my job! How do you think that makes me feel, huh?!" 

"When did you last update your findings, Jimin?" Taehyung asked, ignoring everything that Jimin just said. 

"The night of our fight." Jimin admitted. 

"You have a decision to make." Taehyung told him. 

"I know." 

"Either scrap the whole thing, quit your job and stay with them," Taehyung said, "Or keep your job, and do it right. No feelings. No relationships. No fucks." 

"He's different, Tae." Jimin said. 

"He's not part of the job." Taehyung said, emotionlessly. 

"I like him." 

"He's a member of a fucking gang, Jimin!" 

"He's more than that." Jimin said, almost pleading, needing Taehyung to believe him, "When you meet him tomorrow, you'll see. I promise." 

"Think about what I said." Taehyung said, grabbing his bag and walking out of the door, leaving Jimin alone in a house that he hadn't slept in for days.

 

~~~

 

"How much do you know?" Jin asked with his arms crossed over his chest, all eyes on him. 

"Enough." Taehyung said, standing his ground. 

"I'm going to ask you this one more time." Jin told him, voice gritty, jaw taut as he stared dangerously at Taehyung who was standing in the middle of the gym, "How much do you know?" 

"I know that you're the leader of the Kim Clan." Taehyung said, slightly intimidated by Jin, occasionally glancing over at Jimin for reassurance, "I know that Yoongi owns this gym, and that Jungkook over there is the Unbeatable JK. I know that you're dating Namjoon who knows everything, and that Yoongi and Hoseok are a couple, and now so are Jimin and Jungkook. I know that Archer was the one who stabbed Hoseok and-" 

"Everything." Jin interrupted, "He told you everything?" 

Jimin almost shrunk away, feeling the stares on him as he lowered his gaze, both guilty and ashamed. 

"Jimin." Jin said, almost like an order Jimin couldn't refuse. 

"Yes?" 

"What did I say would happen if you told anyone?" Jin asked him. 

"Jin-" Jungkook started to say but Jin cut him off with just a look. 

"I warned you about him, didn't I, Jungkook?" Jin almost spat, "I told you that there was something about him that-" 

"What are you going to do, huh?" Taehyung interrupted, gaining courage, "I already know, and if I wanted to, I could have told everyone about it. But I didn't. I kept my mouth shut and pretended all this time that I knew nothing." 

"And you think that guarantees your safety?" 

"What do you have to lose, huh?" Taehyung said, stepping closer to Jin, "Everyone already knows about the Kim Clan. You have nothing to lose. If something even slips from me, I have everything to lose." 

Jin stuck his tongue in his cheek as he leaned against the wall, arms still folded over his chest, as if deep in thought. 

Namjoon wanted to say something, but there was something about Jin's aura that was so powerful, that it intimidated him. He wanted to stick up for his friends, to say something, to make sure they were safe, just like how they kept him in the dark to keep him safe. But he didn't. He stood there, watching the entire thing unfold. 

"We're in the middle of a gang war, Jin," Hoseok spoke up, "We can't do this right now." 

"He knows." Jin said, as if that was explanation enough. 

"And we can't change the fact that he does." Yoongi said, "Threatening them will get us no where. They already know." 

Jin was deep in thought as he looked between Taehyung who was standing in the middle of the room, Jimin who was on the bleachers and Namjoon who was sat next to Jimin. 

This was never part of the plan. They were never part of the plan. Yet somehow, they managed to weasel their way into the gym, and some even in the hearts of the members. Had these three been anyone else, they would be lying in a pool of their own blood with a bullet lodged in them. But they weren't. Namjoon was Jin's boyfriend, and Jimin was Jungkook's. And Taehyung...Well he was with them. Like a package deal. 

The six of them waited, looking at Jin intently, waiting for something. Anything.

Jungkook, Yoongi and Hoseok knew that whatever decision Jin made right here, right now, was to be followed. There would be no discussion about it. Right now, he wasn't Jin their friend, he was Jin The Mafia Gang Leader. The Leader of Kim Clan. They respected him enough, even if they didn't agree with his decision, to act accordingly. Whatever decision that Jin made, even if it meant that he had to let go of Jimin, Jungkook would respect. And that's what scared him. The fact that he may have to let go of Jimin. Jungkook was in too deep. He couldn't imagine waking up and not being next to Jimin and he's only been his boyfriend for all of a couple of days. 

"Here's what's going to happen." Jin said, kicking off from the wall as he walked closer to the centre of the room, "The three of you are going to keep your mouths shut about this. You're not going to tell anyone, and I mean anyone about the Kim Clan or the people in it, or else I won't be as forgiving as I am being right now." 

"And I can leave?" Taehyung asked, trying to stabilise his voice. 

"Not yet." Jin gritted out. 

"It's not safe right now," Hoseok said. 

"That's why they're going to join us." Jin said. 

"What?" Jimin almost yelled. 

"Not officially." Jin said, "Like Jungkook is. An honorary member." 

"B-But-" Taehyung stuttered, eyes doubling in size. 

"Look, we're in the middle of a fucking gang war! The fact that you even know this gang exists and whose in it makes you a target. If anything, you should be fucking thanking me! Being in the Kim Clan guarantees you protection." Jin spat out, "You should be fucking bowing at my feet rather than questioning my decisions! I'm not the one who told you anything about this gang!" 

A beat of silence rested over the gym before Taehyung spoke up.

"What do we have to do?"

"Keep your mouth shut for starters," Jin spat out. 

"That's fairly obvious," Taehyung scoffed. 

"Oh yeah? Tell that to Strawberry Shortcake over that who couldn't!" Jin said with a roll of his eyes.

Jin glanced over at Taehyung and saw the torment that was written all over his face. 

He sighed as he said, "Don't worry, we're not going to make you kill people or whatever you think it is that we do. We'll probably just make you do odd jobs like we do with Jimin right now. You'll be safe here." 

Taehyung's face relaxed and Jin couldn't help but let out a scoff at the prejudice that Taehyung had about them. But then again, who could blame him with whatever the news shows the world about them. He still couldn't forget how Namjoon said that their gang 'terrorises' the city. But prejudices are the last thing on his mind right now, especially with this gang war. 

"Once this whole thing with the Hwan Clan blows over, you can leave if you want." Jin said, looking around the room before asking, "Anything else?" 

"Do you want to discuss the stuff here or...?" Hoseok asked. 

"Might as well since everyone knows everything." 

"The Hwan Clan is being unusually silent." Hoseok said, "There's been no activity from them at all. Not at the docks, not in the street and not even at the clubs." 

"That's...very unlike Jaehwan." Jungkook commented. 

"Exactly." Was all Hoseok said. 

"What did the two informants say?" Jin asked. 

"Nothing. They know nothing." Hoseok shrugged. 

"They suck at being informants," Yoongi scoffed. 

"He's planning something, and it's going to be big," Jin thought out loud, "We can't let him have the upper hand." 

"But we don't know anything. We don't even have an inkling of what he could be planning," Hoseok said. 

"If I know Jaehwan at all, he's going to be going for our weak spots." Jin said, glancing at the three experienced members. 

"You don't think that..." Jungkook said, trailing off, eyes moving between them, communicating in their own way.

"He couldn't possibly know." Jin said. "We've all been quiet, haven't we?" 

"What? What are you talking about?" Taehyung asked. 

"It's us, isn't it?" Jimin spoke up, "We're the liabilities." 

"Well, well, aren't we clever," Jin said, condescendingly. 

"But there's no way that he knows about us. Namjoon just found out, Taehyung is barely around, and I-" Jimin said, cutting himself off, "I'm just like the janitor." 

"You're part of the family now," Hoseok said, looking at the three worried boys in front of him, "All of you are, and there's no way we're going to let any of you get hurt." 

"Leave the worrying and planning to us," Yoongi said, echoing Hoseok's statement, "You're going to be fine. Even you, Taehyung. Like Hobi said, we're family." 

"Hobi." Jin called, "Call the informants to the third meeting point by the shipping docks. I'll meet them there in an hour." 

"I'll come with." Hoseok said, whipping out his phone. 

"Kook, I need you in my office." Yoongi said, already walking into his office. 

"I'll meet you back at mine?" Jungkook said, to Jimin as he stood up. 

"I'll bring dinner." Jimin said with a smile.

Namjoon nudged Jimin, cocking his head to Taehyung who looked deep in thought, an almost worried expression on his face. 

"Tae?" Namjoon called out, "What's wrong?" 

"I was wrong." He said, "They aren't just members of a gang." 

Taehyung's breath hitched in his throat, Hoseok and Yoongi's words hanging heavily around him. He was scared to let them affect him because it meant that maybe, just maybe he was wrong about them. That he had let his prejudices affect him and his thoughts about them. He could see why Jimin was so drawn and had gotten so attached so fast. Maybe they weren't what the news portrayed them to be, and maybe behind the tattoos, the gun in the holster by their jeans, and the hard, cold exterior that they tried so hard to maintain, they were more like him than he realised. And that realisation scared him. Because, if he got attached, he knew that there was a possibility of getting hurt, and he didn't know what scared him more - The other gang hurting him, or the people that he could come to care for hurting him.

 "You're scared." Jimin said. 

"Aren't you?" Taehyung said, meaning behind his words heavier than normal. 

"Very." Jimin said, swallowing harshly, knowing he had more to lose than anyone in this room.

 

~~~

 

Jimin took a bite of his food, sitting opposite Jungkook on the dining table as he scarfed down the food, occasionally glancing up and smiling at Jimin. 

Jimin felt oddly guilty, but worse so because Jungkook wasn't saying anything to him. 

He let out a deep sigh, putting down his cutlery. 

"You okay, babe?" Jungkook asked him, cocking an eyebrow in confusion. 

"Aren't you going to ask me?" 

"Ask you? Ask you what?" He said, even more confused. 

"About Taehyung. About why I told him." Jimin said, "Aren't you angry?" 

Jungkook put his cutlery food down, putting two and two together. 

"I'm not angry, and I'm not going to ask or even accuse you of anything," Jungkook said, calmly. 

"Why?" 

"Because I trust you, Jimin." He told him, "It's as simple as that. I trust you enough to know that you would never intentionally put me, or the gang in danger." 

There it was. That pang of guilt. The clench of his heart. Jungkook trusted him so, so blindly as Jimin was actively breaking that trust with every word he spoke, every confession of love, every stolen glance, every time his lips brushed over Jungkook's....Every time Jimin so much as breathed in the same direction as Jungkook. 

"But I broke the first rule," Jimin said, wanting Jungkook to scream and shout at him. He didn't deserve Jungkook, he really didn't. 

"This isn't fight club, Jimin," Jungkook said with a chuckle, "If you told Taehyung about us, it must have been for a reason. He's your best friend. I trust you and, if you trust him enough to tell him about us, then he must be worthy." 

Jimin shot him a smile, unable to meet his eyes. 

"Are you sure that's all you wanted to talk about?" Jungkook asked, gently. 

"I just feel bad, that's all," Jimin admitted, omitting the reasons as to why he felt bad. 

"Aww baby," Jungkook cooed, "The fact that you feel bad says a lot about you, doesn't it? You care about us, and the gang, and that's more than enough. You'd never intentionally put us in harms way, just like how we wouldn't do the same to you. We're a family. And family looks out for family." 

Jimin said nothing as he picked up his cutlery, pushing the piece of chicken around the plate. 

"Hey," Jungkook said, reaching over and placing his hand on top of Jimin's, "Look at me." 

Reluctantly, Jimin lifted his head to look at Jungkook who had a bright smile and wide eyes filled with adoration. 

"Through thick and thin," Jungkook said, pausing, waiting for Jimin to finish the sentence. 

"And everything in between." He finished with a smile. 

"There's that smile I love," Jungkook said lovingly, his smile only growing wider.

The rest of the dinner was spent with Jimin pushing his guilt deep, deep down and away from his mind so that he wouldn't have to think about it. He may be lying to Jungkook about a lot of things, but his feelings for him were true. He really did like Jungkook. He liked talking to him, and hearing his views about the world. He liked his kisses, and the way that Jungkook made him feel about himself. He liked the way that Jungkook was fiercely protective and would do anything to see him smile. He liked the way that he smiled at him, that special smile that reached his eyes, making them wide and soft, twinkling with adoration and love. That smile that was reserved for Jimin and Jimin alone. Jimin especially liked just looking at him. It was like stargazing, every time he looked at Jungkook. Jimin could swear that Jungkook held galaxies in his eyes; and every time that Jimin would look at him, he would find new stars twinkling in his pools of honey. 

"Let me do the dishes today," Jimin said with a smile, "Think of it as an apology for telling Taehyung." 

"You don't have to apologise," Jungkook said, standing up as he brought the plates to the sink, "But I'll do anything to get out of doing the dishes." 

Jimin giggled, smiling at how cheeky Jungkook was. He kissed his cheek and put the plates in the sink before walking out of the kitchen. 

"I'm going to take a shower. Do you want to watch a movie before bed?" 

"Are you not going to meet Hobi and Yoongi tonight?" Jimin asked. 

"Tomorrow." Jungkook corrected. 

"What movie?" Jimin asked. 

"You pick, babe. I'm not fussed." Jungkook said closing the door to the bathroom. 

Jimin had just gathered everything into the sink when he heard his phone vibrate from the bar counter. 

"Shit." He swore as soon as he saw the familiar flash on the screen. He couldn't risk answering the phone here. 

"Kook, I'll be right back." Jimin shouted, trying to sound nonchalant, hoping that Jungkook wouldn't look for him.

"Where are you going?" Jungkook called out over the sound of running water. 

"Reception here sucks and I'm getting a call." Jimin explained, quickly rushing out. 

"Try the hallway outside!" Jungkook said as loud as he could. 

Jimin rushed out to the hallway, answering the call as he closed the front door. 

"Hello?" 

"What took you so long to answer?" Was the first thing that came through the receiver. 

"Why are you calling me?" Jimin said, whispering harshly. 

"Is that any way to talk to your boss, Jimin?" 

"When I said no contact, that includes phone calls." Jimin said. 

"I just wanted to ask how things were going," His boss said, "It's coming to three weeks now. You have a month left." 

Jimin thought back to the conversation that he had with Taehyung yesterday. Now could be his chance. He could end it all right here, right now. He could quit and no one would know the difference. After all, Yoongi was paying him pretty well. He had Jungkook. He had protection from the gang....He had a family. He could end this. Jimin could be free.

"Jimin? Hello?" His boss said. 

"I'm here." Jimin breathed out, eyes on the front door, as if Jungkook could step out at any moment. 

"I called to tell you something," His boss said. 

"I have something to tell you too." Jimin said. 

"Me first!" His boss told him excitedly, "I managed to convince the higher ups that if your article is good, and I mean really good, that we could give you a promotion." 

"What?" 

"There are talks about making you Editor." His boss said, "Pay raise. Your own office. Your name on the door. The swivel chair. An assistant...Everything you ever wanted." 

"E-Everything I ever wanted." Jimin repeated. 

And it was. It was everything he wanted. It was everything he dreamed of. 

Park Jimin - Editor. 

That was his dream. His name on the door of his own office. He dreamt of having his assistant call every time there was someone to see him. He'd dreamt of having his own business card with those exact words on it. He'd dreamt of it all. This was everything that he had worked towards all these years. 

"Now, what was it you wanted to tell me?" His boss asked. 

"That, I'll make this the best damn thing I've ever done." Jimin said, without even realising it. 

"That's my boy!" His boss praised, "I look forward to reading it." 

"For this to work, this can't happen again." Jimin whispered harshly, glancing at the front door again, "You can't contact me again." 

"I'll see you in a month, Editor." His boss said with a chuckle, hanging up the phone.

Jimin had to take a breath to steady himself before walking back into the house. 

"Who was that baby?" Jungkook asked, stepping out of the shower, using the towel to dry his damp raven black hair. 

"Just Taehyung," Jimin lied, "Wanted to know if everything was okay." 

Jungkook nodded, "Did you pick out the movie, yet?" 

"Spiderman?" Jimin suggested, picking the first movie in his head. 

"Oh, I love Tom Holland," Jungkook said with a smile, throwing the towel on the chair before walking to the living room, blissfully unaware of Jimin's lies.

 

~~~

 

Kang walked up the stairs, making his way to Jaehwan, with information in his hand and his head. He couldn't screw this up. No one was safe from Jaehwan, not even Kang, his right hand man; his most trusted man. One screw up, and....and Kang didn't want to think about what could happen. 

Jaehwan ruled on fear. He fed off the strife, chaos and fear he caused. It gave him a high like no other. He loved every second of it. He loved hearing the screams, and the pleads for mercy. He loved watching bloodshed; enjoyed it with every sadistic fibre of his being. Some people would call it psychotic, but Jaehwan called it being Powerful. The people who called it any other name couldn't handle power, in Jaehwan's mind. 

Some people were just born to rule, and Jaehwan believed that he was the only one that was right for the job. 

He was the only one who knew what being a ruler truly meant.

Being a ruler meant no mercy. Not even if it was family. Many people think that his father died and then passed on the legacy of the Hwan Clan to Jaehwan, but that wasn't entirely true. Jaehwan killed him. Murdered his own father right where he placed his throne. 

After all, being a ruler meant that certain sacrifices had to be made. Even if that person was his own father.

He didn't care. He didn't give two shits. His father didn't know how to rule. He was too merciful. He was too nice. He didn't want to get involved with drugs, or anything of the sort. His father was weak and pathetic, and unworthy of being a ruler; a gang leader. All he was good for was being turned into an ornament - Ashes into an urn to be displayed on top of the fireplace. A fitting irony.

"Kang." Jaehwan greeted with a nod, leaning back against the chair. 

"The Archer has information." Kang said. 

"About the pink boy?" 

"Yes, Jaehwan." Kang said with a nod. 

"What is it?" 

"His name is Jimin. Park Jimin." Kang started off, "He has two close friends, Kim Taehyung and Kim Namjoon." 

"Are they involved with Jin and his mutts too?" 

"Just Namjoon," Kang said, "He's with Jin." 

"With Jin you say," Jaehwan said, cocking an eyebrow, a sadistic smile growing on his face, "And what about Jimin?" 

"He's with JK." 

"And the other?" 

"No one has seen him with the gang." Kang said, shaking his head. 

"What else did Archer find out?" 

"Jimin worked in journalism before getting fired, and then he joined the gym. But he isn't part of the gang," Kang said. 

"Why was he fired?" 

"That's the weird thing, there was no reason given on the forms." Kang said. 

"Archer couldn't find out?" Jaehwan asked. 

"No. He looked. He hacked the servers and everything, but there was no reason given, unlike the other forms that had lengthy explanations and reports. Jimin's had none," Kang explained. 

"Hmm..." Jaehwan hummed, deep in thought, "So, our little flamingo is hiding something. Not so innocent after all, aren't we?" 

Kang stood there, nodding, like a lap dog. 

"What else?" Jaehwan asked, greedy for more information. 

"H-He's been seen with JK a lot of times," Kang repeated. 

"I know that, but what else?" Jaehwan spat out, wanting more information, voice dangerously low, as he got when he was ready to destroy something. 

"H-He's JK's weakness." Kang said, words tumbling out clumsily, "H-He's been protecting Jimin and-and they've been seen together multiple times in the gym, outside and uhh, everywhere." 

"Call Archer back. Tell him to find out more about Namjoon and our not so innocent Flamingo." Jaehwan ordered, "There's more than the eye meets to this." 

"Y-Yes Jaehwan." Kang stuttered out, hands shaking as he reached into his pocket to grab his phone. 

"I want Jin and the rest of his stupid little mutts on their knees begging for mercy by the time I'm done with them." Jaehwan said, leaning back into his seat as a dangerous smirk broke out on his face at his sinister vision.

 

~~~

 

Jin practically dragged himself into his house, exhausted, both physically and mentally. Most days had become like this one, and even after all this time, he still wasn't used to it. 

"Long day at the office, honey?" He heard from the living room. 

"Joonie." He breathed, a smile breaking out on his face, all exhaustion suddenly draining away from him. 

"I'm not very good at cooking, but I brought food," Namjoon said, walking up to him. 

"I'm just happy you're here." Jin said, soft and gentle.

"I'll heat up dinner," Namjoon said, looking at his watch, "Or...what is a meal that you eat at 2am called? Supper? You know what, I'll just heat up the food." 

Jin dragged himself to the dining table, plopping himself down and slumping in the seat. He was just so tired. It was like everyone needed him all at once, and he just wasn't enough. This life, being a leader of a gang, was more demanding that it seemed. He had to be everywhere at once, on top of everything all the time. He barely had time for himself. It's been like this ever since he took over from his father. 

"You okay?" Namjoon asked, bringing the plates to the dining room, placing it down in front of Jin. 

"Just tired," Jin said, not wanting to worry him.

Namjoon sat beside him, cocking an eyebrow as he looked at Jin who had a sullen expression on his face. 

"What's going on, Jin?" Namjoon asked gently, "Talk to me, babe." 

Jin wanted to. He really did. But he didn't know how. All his life, he'd been told to bottle his feelings up, to be strong, to never show weakness ever. 

He could barely admit his feelings to himself, how was he supposed to open up to anyone?

"Joon," Jin said, taking a deep breath as he prepared himself to ask a question, "Did you mean it?"

"Mean what?" 

"What you said in the gym? About trying...About trying with us?" 

Namjoon reached out, placing his hand on Jin's, "I'm here aren't I?" 

Jin pulled his hand back, reluctantly, trying to mask his emotions. He held a blank expression on his face as he finally got the courage to meet Namjoon's eyes. He couldn't be selfish any longer, especially with what was going on now. 

"Joo-Namjoon." He said, quickly correcting himself. 

"What's wrong?" Namjoon asked, confused. 

"You don't have to be here. You don't have to try, Namjoon. With everything that's going on with Jaehwan and how you're a target...I promise I'll protect you with everything I have, but you don't have to be here. You don't have to be with me, Namjoon. You can-" 

"Jin, stop!" Namjoon said, taken aback, "What are you talking about? What is this? What are you saying?" 

"I'm giving you an out." Jin said, "No strings attached. You can leave and I promise that-"

"What makes you think I want an out?" Namjoon said, "I don't. Sure, I needed some time to process everything, but I'm here now. I'm with you. I'm here, Jin and I'm not going anywhere, anytime soon. I hate to break it to you Kim Seokjin, but you're kind of stuck with me now." 

"It's not going to be easy," Jin warned him. 

"I don't want easy." 

"You might get hurt," Jin said, giving him all the reasons not to be with him. 

"I have a first aid kit." Namjoon said. 

"I might not be able to protect you all the time." Jin said, worry seeping through his voice. 

"Just you trying is good enough," Namjoon told him with a dimpled smile, inching closer to him.

Jin let out a sigh, hanging his head, food getting cold in front of him. 

"Is that what you're worried about?" Namjoon asked, "That I'll get hurt even though you try to protect me?" 

"I-I don't know how I could live with myself if anything happened to you," Jin admitted, "I've never felt like this about anyone before and knowing that what I do puts you in danger..." 

"Look at me," Namjoon said gently, raising his hand to tip Jin's chin up so that he could stare into his eyes, "I don't care about that. I don't care about Jaehwan or whatever he wants to do. All I care about is you. I know that you won't let anything happen to me-" 

"But that's just the thing, Joon," Jin said in a pained voice, resigned. "What if I can't? What if I do everything in my power and you still get hurt?"

"Then I get hurt." Namjoon said with a shrug. 

"How are you so calm? You could die!" 

"You won't let me." Namjoon told him, confident. 

"You should leave." Jin told him, "You should find someone normal. Fall in love, and have mundane problems that don't involve gang wars, or death. You should get married and have kids....You shouldn't be with me." 

"I do want all of that," Namjoon said, "I want the love, and the wedding, and the arguments, and kids...But I only want that with you." 

"You don't know what you're saying." Jin said, shaking his head, refusing to believe him. 

"Don't I?" Namjoon told him, "Tell me you haven't pictured it. Tell me you haven't pictured our future together and I'll leave." 

"Joon..." Jin sighed. 

"I don't know if you know this, but I've kind of fallen for you, Kim Seokjin." Namjoon said, the pad of his thumb rubbing soft circles into Jin's cheek, "I've fallen for you." 

Jin's eyes fluttered shut, words sinking in, as he let out a shaky breath. This was real. Someone cared about him. Someone loved him. 

"I'm in this for the long run." Namjoon said, "I'm not leaving. I'm not going anywhere. I'm not giving up on us." 

"I'm scared, Joon." Jin admitted, eyes red rimmed as he allowed himself for the first time to be vulnerable, "I'm so scared that something is going to happen to the people I care about. It happened with Hobi, and I don't want it to happen again." 

"We'll figure it out, Jin," Namjoon said, bringing him into a hug. 

Jin hugged Namjoon close, needing to feel his warmth on him, needing that reassurance that everything was going to be okay. That they were going to be okay. 

"We're going to be okay," Namjoon reassured, holding Jin tighter in his arms, protecting him from the outside world.

 

~~~

 

Jimin was sat in his own bed with his laptop in front of him, opened to the word document of the gang that he hadn't updated for a long time. 

"Come on, Jimin," He said quietly to himself, as if he could get caught at anytime. As if one of them would come walking into his house at 3 in the morning and figure everything out. 

"Editor. You're going to be editor. This is all you've ever dreamed about!" Jimin said, getting more and more furious with himself. "So why the hell can't you write!" 

The blinking of the cursor taunted him as he stared at the document. 

He had the information. In fact, he had lots of it. He had a whole load of information swirling around in his head that he just had to get down onto the document. But he couldn't. He physically couldn't bring himself to do it. 

So he sat there, looking at the document as if the words would magically just appear on the screen if he stared hard enough. 

But it didn't. 

All he was looking at, was the information about Hoseok being in the hospital. That's how far behind he was. 

"Come on, Jimin. Come on." He told himself, trying to motivate himself to write. 

"A lot has happened since then. A lot that you know about! So, just....write." He said to himself as he pulled the laptop on his lap, staring at the keyboard. 

"Fucking hell!" Jimin screamed, pushing the laptop away, as he stood up. 

"What the fuck is wrong with me!" He yelled, pacing the floor of his room. 

He didn't know what to do. Should he quit? Should he not? 

This editor job was his only dream! It's been his dream since he had learned his first word, and it was his dream throughout middle school, and secondary school, and college and even university. This was all he wanted! It was right in front of him and all he had to do was get some words down on a document, and he couldn't even do that! 

But then again. 

The information he had, was about people close to him. It was about his new family. People that took him in, believing that Jimin was good, and true at heart. People who loved him, and wanted to protect him. Wanted to teach him how to protect himself. People who accepted him, heart and soul, flaws and all. 

But they weren't his people. Were they?

This job was secure. This job could provide security. With them, it was just emotions. Emotions that could fade at any time. 

Jimin got onto the bed, pulling the laptop close to him, bile rising up in his throat, the sound of rapid keys clicking filled the room. 

Hoseok's Backstory.

 

 

Chapter Text

"Kang." Jaehwan called out, annoyed. 

No answer. 

"Fucking-" He swore under his breath, getting more and more angry, fuming from the nostrils as he shouted, "Kang!" 

Kang dashed through the door, fear in his eyes, the echoes from Jaehwan's scream still bouncing around the room. 

"J-Jaehwan." He answered, the door closing behind him with a slight slam from the strength that Kang used. 

With narrowed, fiery eyes, and a low voice, Jaehwan asked, "Any updates on our little Flamingo?" 

"N-No, Jaehwan," Kang said, chest heaving slightly from fear. Fear of him. Fear of the fact that Jaehwan always acted first and then thought later....

Fear for his life. 

"What is taking Archer so long?!" He snarled, clutching his crystal glass a little tighter in his hand. 

"He's trying to find anything incriminating, but he hasn't been able to so far," Kang explained, "He hasn't found anything that can be used against them." 

"The fight is in a week." Jaehwan said, "And it seems like Jin's pack of mutts is only growing stronger! Did you see JK's fight yesterday?" 

Kang nodded, not saying anything else. 

"We have to do something." Jaehwan thought out loud, "We have to throw them off their game. We have to pull attention away from the fight and onto them." 

"What do you have in mind?" 

"You did say that the Flamingo was JK's weakness, didn't you?" Jaehwan asked. 

"He is." 

"Well, let's test that theory, shall we?" He said with a sinister smirk. 

 

~~~

 

The gym had changed a lot over the last month. 

The only constants used to just be Yoongi and Jungkook. Occasionally, Hoseok and Jin used to join them, but it was always Yoongi and Jungkook. 

God, how much had changed.  

The once musty and dark gym was now bright, and full of light, smiles and laughter. Almost unrecognisable, even to the people who used to spend hours on end here.

Jungkook was sitting in between Jimin's legs on the bleachers, absentmindedly playing with his small fingers that was looped around his neck as Jimin talked and laughed with the 6 other guys that were in the gym. 

"You're awfully chirpy today," Jimin commented loud enough for only Jungkook to hear. 

"Hmm?" Jungkook answered, craning his head up to look at Jimin who was smiling down at him, eyes shimmering with adoration. 

"You were humming," Jimin told him, "I've never heard you hum before. What's got you so happy?"

"Take a guess." Jungkook said cheekily, grinning up at his boyfriend. 

"Cheeseball." Jimin muttered, heart fluttering at the romantic comment. 

"I'm serious," Jungkook told him, "I'm just thinking about how much has changed since I met you." 

"What? What's changed?" 

"Everything, Jiminie!" Jungkook said, leaning back against the cold cement of the bleachers, twisting his body slightly to look at Jimin, "Everything's changed." 

"In a good way or a bad way?" 

"Good way. It's always good if it's you." Jungkook said, sincerely.

Jimin's heart clenched. Over the last few days, he had gotten better and better at pushing his guilt away and pretending like it wasn't there. He rationalised it like this: He liked Jungkook. A lot. He really did like him. His feelings for Jungkook were a million percent real and he knew that and he was sure that Jungkook knew that too. He had fallen so fast in the short amount of time that he knew the boxer, and there was no way that he could fake these feelings. Waking up every morning to Jungkook's soft snores, his raven black hair falling over his eyes, his hand, calloused and warm over Jimin's waist, his little mole on his plump bottom lip, was like heaven. Jimin was so happy with him. But being Editor was his dream. He was sure that once he became Editor, and achieved everything he had ever dreamt of, Jungkook would understand. How could he not? Once he saw that Jimin's dream was finally accomplished and that he was successful, and happy, and fulfilled in his life, Jungkook would see it from his point of view and forgive him, and they would live happily ever after. 

That was what Jimin was counting on. Jungkook's love and understanding. Everyone else will come around eventually, but as long as Jungkook could forgive and love him, Jimin was alright with that. 

"I didn't even know that the gym could get this much light," Jungkook said, looking around the gym with a smile on his face. He looked at how Yoongi and Namjoon were laughing at a joke that Taehyung made. He looked at how Hoseok and Jin who seemed deep in conversation with their eyebrows furrowed, stop for a second as they looked at the three men, a smile growing on their faces before coming back into conversation, the smile never really leaving. The gym had changed. A lot. 

"All we did was draw the curtains," Jimin said. 

"You did so much more than that," Jungkook said, with a shake of his head, "You let light in this world of darkness that we live in. You bring sunshine and happiness everywhere you go and you don't even know it." 

A lump grew in Jimin's throat. 

Jungkook truly believed that Jimin was pure, and good. That nothing could ever taint him. That he was an angel. Jimin couldn't help but think of the worst case scenario. Once Jungkook found out...What if he didn't love Jimin anymore? What if he left him? What if he-

No! Jimin couldn't think like that. He needed to be optimistic. He needed to be the light that Jungkook believed he was. 

"I didn't do anything," Jimin said honestly.

"You did." Jungkook told him earnestly, "If you would have shown this gym, right here, right now, to the Jungkook from months ago, he wouldn't have recognised it. The fact that there's actually laughter, and light, and smiles...I'm not used to seeing so many happy people here. This gym was a safe haven. A place where the gang members would run to if anything bad happened. I'm used to fights, and guns, and blood, oh god, the blood. I was convinced at one point that the floors were coloured red." 

Jungkook shook his head, as if the thoughts and the memories would erase themselves. 

"But then you came along, with your bright smile and pink hair and completely changed us. You took this gym as your own and you made it what it is today," Jungkook told him, "I mean, you literally threw a party for someone you didn't even know and we sang a song! We never do that sort of thing!" 

"Kookie, listen to me," Jimin said, cupping his cheek as he leaned forward, and said, in a soft, gentle voice, filled with nothing but love, "You don't need me, or anyone else to fill your life with light. You aren't darkness. This world that you're in doesn't define who you are. It doesn't dictate your character. Kookie, you're worth so much more than what you think of yourself. You deserve more happiness than there are stars in the universe." 

"I have you." Jungkook said, loud enough for only Jimin to hear as he leaned into his touch, "The universe and all the stars in it can never compare to you." 

"Hey, lovebirds!" Yoongi called out from the other side of the gym, "Break time's over! We have a fight to prep for." 

Reluctantly they pulled away from each other. Jungkook picked his water bottle up from beside him, moving into the ring while Jimin walked over to the supply closet, putting his headphones in to work to the music. 

"Hobi, have you checked the fight list for tomorrow night yet?" Jin asked him as he typed away on his phone. 

"No, I haven't," Hoseok answered, "I can do it now." 

"It's fine. I'm on my phone, I'll do it," Jin told him, pulling up his contacts, "Can you check with our informants if there's any word on Jaehwan?" 

Meanwhile, Taehyung and Namjoon were working on some paperwork that Yoongi had them look over seeing as both their jobs involved some form of accounting and math. 

"This doesn't add up," Taehyung muttered, looking over the numbers again to see if he made a mistake. 

"Did you add the expenses for first aid yet?" Namjoon asked as he scanned through the pages that he was working on. 

"Something's wrong." Taehyung said, looking through it, "There's a large sum missing. Thousands of dollars." 

"That can't be right, look over it again," Namjoon said, putting his papers down and looking through Taehyung's instead. 

There was a grunt in the ring as Jungkook punched the boxing pad. 

"You're doing it again," Yoongi warned him, "You're going on the offensive too soon! You did that in the last two fights as well. Remember what I told you?" 

"Defend. Gauge their weakness. Attack." Jungkook said with a sigh, bouncing on the heels of his feet. 

"Again." Yoongi ordered, "And don't forget to fix your form." 

Everyone was busy doing their own thing, too immersed in their own work to notice anyone else. It was almost symbiotic the way the worked. It came as a surprise to all of them at how easily they fit together. It was almost as though they were always meant to find each other. 

"What?!" Jin almost screamed, making everyone turn to look at him, "How could you let this happen?!" 

They were eyeing him, almost ready to jump into action if need be, all of them were, except Jimin who had a mop in his hands and earphones in as he worked to the music, singing along softly as he bobbed his head, unaware to the outside world.

"Then you should have fucking checked with me before making stupid ass decisions!" Jin yelled into the phone, a mixture of anger and panic that was becoming more and more evident. 

Jungkook looked between Yoongi and Hoseok, confused, hoping that one of them would have the answers as to why Jin was behaving the way he was, but neither one of them had any clue. 

"For fuc-" Jin swore, hanging up the call halfway through, running a hand through his hair, trying to figure out what to do next. 

No one spoke. The only sounds that could be heard was Jin's breathing and a soft, almost undecipherable sound of Jimin's singing. 

"Jin?" Namjoon asked in a gentle voice, "What's going on?" 

He didn't know what to say. How was he supposed to tell them? 

"Jin?" Namjoon tried again. 

"It's about the fight." Jin answered, almost apologetic, like he was the one responsible, "The fight tomorrow." 

"What about it?" Jungkook immediately chimed in. 

"You're not fighting." Jin said. 

"That's fine, Jin, I can always fight next time, it's not a big de-" 

"You're not fighting because someone else took your place." Jin said, as though they would immediately catch onto what he was trying to say without actually making him say the words out loud. 

Confusion was still written all over their faces, not catching onto his words. 

"Jin? Just tell us." Yoongi said. 

He didn't say anything. He simply looked over Jungkook's shoulder at the pink haired boy who was bopping his head, unaware to the situation, as he mopped the floor, with a smile on his face. 

Jungkook furrowed his eyebrows in confusion, eyes following where Jin was looking. His eyes landed on Jimin. He almost had to do a double-take. He didn't believe it. It couldn't be... 

He looked back at Jin who looked equally guilty and apologetic. 

"No." Jungkook said, almost immediately, "No!" 

Jin said nothing. 

"Jin, tell me you're joking! Tell me this is a prank!" Jungkook said, voice getting louder. 

Jin said nothing. 

"What's going on?" Taehyung asked, cautiously. 

"Fucking hell, Jin! Say something!" Jungkook almost shouted, voice getting louder and louder with each syllable. 

"Jin? What's going on?" Namjoon asked. 

"It's Jimin." Jin said, "Jimin's name is on the fight list." Jin explained. 

All eyes fell on Jimin who was still mopping with his headphones in, head bopping to the beat of the music. 

He felt eyes on him, and took his headphones out, turning around. 

"Oh, was I too loud?" Jimin asked, eyes wide, "I'm sorry. I'll turn it down." 

No one said anything. They all looked at him with the same expression. Their eyes were glistening with worry, already seeing the outcome. 

"Guys? Is everything okay?" Jimin asked them in a gentle voice. 

"Do something!" Jungkook said, turning back to Jin, "Fucking do something or I will!" 

"Kook." Yoongi warned, seeing the rage and almost hopelessness that Jungkook was feeling. 

"There are rules, Kook..." Jin said, sighing. 

When Jin took over from his father as Leader and heard that Jungkook and Yoongi wanted to join, he established some rules. Amongst those rules was the fact that he wasn't going to show favouritism. This rule meant a lot to him and both Yoongi and Jungkook knew that. Jin wanted to be a fair leader. Ironic given the fact that he was the leader of the biggest gang in the city, but it was still one that he lived up to. Once the rules were laid down, he told both of them that despite the love and respect and friendship between them, the rules applied to them too. Friendship or not, this gang was bigger than the three of them and they all knew it. They respected Jin for it even more. 

"Jin, look at him! He can't fight!" Jungkook all but pleaded. 

"Fight? What fight?" Jimin asked, lost. 

"The rule says that you can withdraw your name up to 24 hours before the fight," Jin told him, "The fight's in 21 hours." 

"He didn't put his name in the fucking list, Jin!" 

"Guys?" Jimin chimed in, "What's going on?" 

"I don't know how his name got on there, but the rules are rules, Kook." Jin said. 

With a strained, almost broken voice, knowing what could happen in the ring, Jungkook said, "Please." 

"My hands are tied." 

Jimin walked closer to them, dropping the mop on the floor, "Does someone want to tell me what's going on and why my boyfriend is shouting at the leader of the biggest gang in the city?" 

"Jimin," Jin sighed, not knowing what to say. Despite their differences, he still didn't want to see him get hurt, especially not to the extent of getting beaten to a pulp. People have died in that ring for being too weak, he didn't want Jimin to be one of the casualties. 

"What's going on?!" Jimin demanded. 

"There's a fight tomorrow." Yoongi said, lips pursed. 

"I know that." Jimin answered, "So what? Jungkook's fighting like he always is." 

"That's the thing," Yoongi told him, "Jungkook's name isn't on the list." 

"What?" 

"Yours is." Taehyung completed, finally putting two and two together, panic bubbling up inside his chest. 

"What?" Jimin said, inhaling sharply, feeling a weight on his chest. 

"Minnie, look at me," Jungkook said, putting his hands on Jimin's shoulders. 

"Kook." Jimin said, voice barely over a whisper. 

"We're going to figure this out, okay? We're going to leave! For a couple of days! Just you and me and we're going to go far away where they can't find us and you don't have to fight. It's going-" 

"You know what would happen if he decides not to show up, Jungkook," Jin warned him, "That's worse than the fight. Both of you will be targets. They'll kill you." 

"He has a better chance of surviving the attack than the ring!" Jungkook snapped, "At least he would have me out there." 

"What good is it going to serve? In the ring there's just one person! Out there....I'd say about 20." 

"I could take them." 

"You can't and you know it!" Jin snapped, "Don't think with your dick for once, Jungkook!" 

"I"m no-" 

"I'll do it." Jimin interrupted, conviction in his voice, and in a smaller voice he said, "I'll do it. Just please, stop fighting." 

"Jiminie, think about what you're saying! You've seen how brutal these fights can get! You can barely throw a punch and you want to take on a whole professional!" 

"It's better than running away from it," Jimin said, "At least I'd get to see how good I've gotten. Right, Yoongi?" 

"Kid..." Was all Yoongi could manage out. 

"We should practice now." Jimin said to no one in particular, looking around for boxing gloves as though a couple of hours of practice would help him. "Yeah, practice will help." 

"Now's probably not a good time to bring up the missing money, is it?" Taehyung whispered to Namjoon. 

"We aren't even sure it's missing," Namjoon replied. 

"The numbers don't lie, Joon." Taehyung said, "Something's going on. Something bigger than just this fight." 

"You think it's connected?" 

"I think that someone isn't telling the whole truth." 

 

~~~

 

Jimin grunted as he punched the sandbag again, and again, and again, feeling each hit get weaker and weaker. He screamed in frustration, dropping his head in defeat as he stared at the floor, the cold darkness of the gym enveloping him. 

"Jiminie." He heard from behind him, "Come on. Let's go." 

"I can't." Jimin replied. 

"You need to rest. It's past midnight." 

"I need to practice." Jimin insisted, lifting his head and fixing his form before punching the bag with another grunt. 

Just as he was about to take another swing he felt a warm, calloused hand on his forearm, stopping him. 

"Enough." Jungkook said softly.

"I can't stop now." Jimin said, "I need  to practice." 

"You need to sleep, and rest up." 

"I'm not going to win," Jimin said, "Even if you give me a year, I won't win! How am I supposed to win in hours, Kookie! How?!" 

"Listen to me," Jungkook said, turning Jimin around to face him, "I won't let anything happen to you, okay? You're going to be fine!"

"What are you going to do? You can't fight! We can't run! We can't do anything!" Jimin said, "I'm going to die in that ring, aren't I, Jungkook?" 

"You're not dying!" Jungkook said, "Nothing's going to happen to you." 

Jimin scoffed, "Don't make promises you can't keep." 

"I don't know what I'm going to do, but I do know that I'm not going to let anything happen to you! I'm not going to let you get hurt." 

"You can't protect me from everything, Kookie." Jimin told him. 

"Then I'll die trying." Jungkook said. 

"I'm scared." Jimin admitted, words muffled into Jungkook's shirt

"I know," Jungkook said, pulling him into his arms, resting his chin on Jimin's slightly sweaty hair, "I know you are." 

"I can't fight, Kook. I'm not strong. I'm-" 

"Hey, hey, shhh," He said softly, pulling Jimin closer to him, "It's going to be okay. You're not going to get hurt. I'm going to do something, okay? I'll do something, Minnie. I'll figure this out." 

"I'm so scared, Jungkook." Jimin muttered again, eyes shut as he let Jungkook envelop him into a hug, feeling safer in his arms than he did anywhere else. 

Jungkook held him in his arms, wanting to shield him from the outside world, part of him feeling like all of this was his fault. Like if he had just left Jimin alone and not fallen for him, he wouldn't get roped up in this mess. But he couldn't think of himself right now. All he needed to think about was a way out of this. He needed to save Jimin. 

"Through thick and thin," Jungkook whispered into Jimin's hair, waiting for him to finish the sentence. 

"And everything in between." Jimin finished, the words holding him down like an anchor, reminding him that Jungkook was always going to be there for him. It reminded him that he wasn't alone and that they were a team. 

It reminded him that everything was going to be okay.

"Let's go home," Jungkook told him, "I'm going to take care of you, baby." 

 

~~~

 

"Hobi." Jin called out, allowing himself to be hopeful, "Anything?" 

"Nothing." Hoseok said with dishevelled hair from running frustrated hands through it one too many times, "None of the informants know anything." 

"Do you think..." Jin asked, trailing off. 

"That it's an inside job?" Hoseok finished, "I would be lying if I said I didn't consider it." 

"But who would want to hurt Jimin? The only ones who've talked to him are us." 

"I don't know, Jin. I really don't." 

"Do you think it's Jaehwan?" Jin asked him. 

"How would he have access to our server to remove Jungkook's name and replace it with Jimin's?" Hoseok thought out loud, "Does he even know Jimin?"

"Fuck!" Jin almost screamed, "This is so fucking frustrating! I feel like an outsider in my own fucking gang!" 

"Jin, you have to calm down," Hoseok said, "We can't figure anything out if you're not thinking straight." 

"Where's Kook?" Jin asked. 

"He went to take Jimin back to his place." 

Jin hesitated before asking, "How's Jimin?" 

"I knew he would grow on you," Hoseok smirked. 

"He didn't-I just want to know how he is." Jin said, stumbling over his words. 

"He's scared." Hoseok said. 

"I can't remove his name from the list." Jin said. 

"I'm not asking you to." 

"I know, but I just- I can't," Jin said, helplessly. 

"No one's asking you to, Jin," Hoseok reassured him, hearing the guilt and the hopelessness in his voice, "We knew you can't." 

"I want to." 

"We know." Hoseok said with a nod of his head, "We know that if you could, you would do something." 

"Hobi, I just-" 

Ring Rrringgg 

"It's Kook." Hoseok said, picking the phone up and putting it on speaker. 

"Kook. It's Jin and Hoseok." Jin answered, waiting for a response. 

"I'm on my way back." Jungkook said, the engine purring in the background of the phone. 

"How is he?" Hoseok asked. 

"I finally got him to sleep," Jungkook answered, pausing before adding, "He's scared." 

"And you?" Jin asked. 

"What about me?" 

"How are you holding up?" 

"...Just want to fix this." Jungkook said.  

"We're looking into it." Hoseok said, knowing that they've exhausted almost every resource they had. 

"You didn't find anything yet?" Jungkook asked. 

"We asked the informants, literally all of them, and they didn't have anything useful." 

"Could this be Jaehwan's doing?" Jungkook asked. 

"That's what I said," Jin answered, "But does he even know about you and Jimin?" 

"Remember that night that I saved him from those drunk guys?" 

"Yeah?" 

"They were Jaehwan's men." Jungkook told them, "Low ranks and incredibly drunk, but they were his men. What if..." 

"What if they told him," Hoseok finished. 

"It's a possibility." Jungkook offered. 

Silence engulfed the room, both of them waiting on Seokjin to say something. Anything. They just needed him to say something

"The big fight is coming up." Jin said, "We can't-" 

"Jimin is going to get hurt in that ring tomorrow, Jin!" Jungkook burst out, as if Jin didn't know how serious it was. 

"You think I don't know that?! You think I want him to get hurt?!" Jin screamed back, eyes burning a hole through the phone. 

Silence fell. The only thing that could be heard was their hard breathing. 

"He can't get hurt, Jin," Jungkook said, voice pained, "He just can't. I care too much about him to just sit there and watch when...He just can't." 

"I know, Kook. I know." Jin said, hesitating before admitting, "I don't know what to do." 

Hoseok squinted, as if he just heard something. 

"Kook, where are you?" Hoseok asked, hearing the engine rev up through the static of the call. 

"Driving." Was all Jungkook said. 

"Driving where?" 

"To Jaehwan." Jungkook said and hung up. 

"Fuck!" Hoseok cursed, grabbing the phone off the table and dialling his number again. 

No ring. 

"Shit!" Hoseok said, slamming his hand down on the table, looking at Jin, "He turned his phone off."

"Did he just say-" 

"He did." Hoseok confirmed.

"Get your keys." Jin said, grabbing his phone off the table as he stood up, waiting for Hoseok.

"Should we, though?" Hoseok said, not moving. 

"Hobi, what are you-" 

"This way we would find out whether or not Jaehwan is playing dirty, which we know that he probably is," Hoseok said, "At least we could do something about it." 

"He's going into Hwan infested land with no weapons, no back up and an angry mind," Jin told him, as if Hoseok didn't know the situation, "What do you think is going to happen?" 

"He's done worse." Hoseok said, "You need to trust him." 

"I trust him. I don't trust everyone else, especially not Jaehwan." 

"Jin, we still haven't done anything about Jimin." Hoseok said. 

"But Jungkook-" 

"Can handle himself," Hoseok told him, "Jimin can't." 

Jin bit his lip, contemplating the situation, before sitting down against his better judgement. 

"Who else can we call?" Jin said, resigned. 

 

~~~

 

The purring of the engine stopped with just a turn of the keys, before Jungkook got out of his car, locking it behind him. His eyes did an immediate sweep of the place.

It was quiet. Almost too quiet. 

He looked around the dark neighbourhood, barely lit up save for one flashing blue and green neon sign, almost inviting him in like it was expecting him. Like they knew he was coming. 

His pocket suddenly felt heavier, reminding him of the cold metal gun that was loaded up for protection. He had a feeling that this meeting wasn't going to go well, but he couldn't help but want to try. He needed to save Jimin. He didn't care at what cost. He just knew that he needed Jimin to be safe and being in that ring, Jungkook could tell from first hand experience, that it was the least safe place to be. 

The first time Jungkook stepped foot in the ring, he spent the next two weeks in the hospital with a guilty Yoongi by his side and a pissed off Jin that he had to convince not to go on a murder rampage on. Jungkook barely survived in that ring. He knew that if Jimin even stepped foot in there, he wouldn't be in the emergency room - He would be in a morgue. 

Jungkook couldn't lose Jimin. Not now. Not when he had fallen so deep for him. Not when he just got him. Not when Jimin made him feel like he was a whole person rather than a shell of a human. Not when he had just begun to understand what the word happy really feels like. 

And that's why he was here, standing in front of a smirking Jaehwan that knew exactly what he had done. 

"Well, well, well," Jaehwan said, with a shit eating grin that Jungkook wanted to shoot off, "Not going to lie, JK, I was expecting you sooner." 

"The fuck is your play, Hwan." Jungkook said through gritted teeth, voice steely.

"I have no idea what you're talking about," Jaehwan insisted, the grin only turning more and more sinister. 

"Jimin." Was all Jungkook said. 

"Oh you mean, My Little Flamingo?" 

"The fuck did you just say?" Jungkook spat out, taking a step towards Jaehwan. 

As soon as Jungkook's leg moved, three men came out from the shadows. Two of them stood in front of Jaehwan, protecting him, and another kicked the back of Jungkook's leg, catching him off guard, making him fall to the ground. 

"Now, now, JK," Jaehwan said, knowing he had the upper hand, "We wouldn't want you to get hurt, would we?"

Jungkook growled, standing on his feet, internally scolding himself for letting his guard down and letting anger take over. A part of him was glad that Yoongi wasn't here, or Jungkook would have gotten the screaming and the lecture of a lifetime from him. 

"What do you want with Jimin?" Jungkook growled out. 

"I don't want anything." 

"Then why the fuck did you put his name on the fight list!" 

"To get a rise out of you." Jaehwan said simply, like it was the most obvious thing in the world. 

"Well, it worked! Now take his name off!" 

"No." 

"Fucking take it off before-" 

"Before what?" Jaehwan said, taunting him, "What are you going to do, huh, JK? Pull out a gun? Fight me? Scream? Yell? Beg on your knees?" 

Jaehwan was right. He had the upper hand. 

"What do you want?" Jungkook asked, defeated, and tired. He just wanted Jimin safe. That's all he wanted. 

"Now that's better," Jaehwan said, satisfied with the strife he was causing. It was like he was feeding off of the chaos and the strife that he left in his wake. It was powerful.

His jaw tightened up, eyes shooting daggers at the man before him. Jungkook could feel the cold barrel of the gun on his back, a reminder that Jaehwan had the upper hand here. One wrong move and there would be a bullet lodged in his back. 

"What do you want?" Jungkook asked again, punctuating each syllable, venom dripping from every word that he spoke. 

Jaehwan got off his chair, and walked to the bar, all while staying silent. He knew that Jungkook's eyes were following him as he commanded the room by doing something as simple as pour himself a drink. He filled the crystal glass up a quarter of the way with whiskey, opening up the metal ice box with a clang, dropping two cubes of ice inside the amber liquid, already seeing it melt. 

Jungkook was running out of patience, but he didn't want to say anything. He didn't want to aggravate Jaehwan. Jimin's life was in his hands, and if that meant that Jungkook had to grovel, beg, plead, or even endure this pathetic attempt at power play, then he would. 

"You see JK," Jaehwan said, leaning against the marble bar counter, taking a slow sip of his whiskey, "The fight is around the corner." 

Jungkook held his breath....The fight. Of course this was about the fight! He was using Jimin to get to Jungkook, and using the both of them to get to Jin. 

"What about it?" Jungkook said, cautiously. 

"I don't have to even ask to know that you're the one who's going to be fighting," Jaehwan said, looking relaxed, as if he knew his demands would be met, "After all, you are The Unbeatable JK."

Jaehwan lifted his glass up, bringing the neck of the crystal to his lips as he took a small sip, smacking his lips after. 

"If you want your little boyfriend to live, I suggest you pull out of the fight." Jaehwan said, delivering the punch. 

"And if I don't?" 

"Do you remember that little taster fighter that I supplied? The one who almost pummelled you to death?" Jaehwan said, "He's nothing compared to the fighter I brought over for Our Darling Little Flamingo." 

"How do I know you'll call off the fight?" Jungkook sneered, blood boiling. 

"You don't." Jaehwan answered, setting his glass down on the marble table, the condensation from the ice, dripping down, leaving a puddle beside the crystal. "Just like how I don't know that you will pull out of the fight." 

Jungkook opened his mouth to retort, but Jaehwan cut him off. 

"But I do know that you would do anything to save that Little Flamingo's life. And trust me when I say that if you don't do what I want...well, you better say your goodbyes now, because there is no way in hell, that he would survive tomorrow." 

Jaehwan barely lifted his finger before Jungkook was being dragged out of the bar and the door was slammed in his face. 

He wanted to curse! To shout and scream and storm his way back into the bar and beat the shit out of Jaehwan until he was a bloodied pulp. But he couldn't. He felt helpless.

On one hand he had the gang; the most trusted people in his life. The people who were there for him for as long as he could remember. The people who clothed him, who fought for him, who taught him how to defend himself, who put a roof over his head, and bandages over his cuts. 

And on the other side, he had his love....

Love.

Oh my god, Jungkook loves Jimin.

The realisation just hit him.

Jimin had his heart. A heart that Jungkook was convinced he didn't have, until Jimin came along. Jimin was asleep alone in his bed, scared out of his mind, in a situation that Jungkook dragged him in. 

If he decided to fight, then Jimin would die tomorrow. 

If he decided to pull out of the fight, then Jaehwan would get the Kim Clan and everyone in it. 

...what was he supposed to do?

 

~~~

 

All seven of them gathered in the morning, huddled up by the bleachers as Jungkook explained the situation. 

"So, he said that he wanted you to pull out of the fight and then he would remove Jimin's name?" Yoongi clarified. 

"He didn't say remove Jimin's name. He said save his life." Jungkook said, squinting his eyes as he tried to remember the exact details. 

"What does that mean?" Taehyung asked. 

"That Jimin won't fight." Jungkook answered. 

"But how? My name can't be removed..." Jimin said. 

Jungkook looked at Jin, Yoongi and Hoseok, all of them thinking the same thing. 

"What? What is it? What are those looks?" Namjoon asked.

Jin shook his head, looking back at the six boys, "So basically he wants Jungkook to pull out of the fight, that's why he's doing all of this." 

"Doesn't this go against the rules?" Jimin asked. 

"Which one?" Hoseok asked. 

"No foul play! Or, or, the treaty! One of these has to help!" Jimin said, rushed, and desperate. 

"I told you Minnie, these gang members are like lawyers. They'll always find a loophole." Jungkook said, heart breaking at how deflated and resigned Jimin looked. 

"They're not breaking any rules," Jin said, "Jaehwan isn't fighting and neither are any one of his men. Anyway, underground fight night is a No Man's Zone." 

"What does that mean?" Taehyung asked. 

"Neutral ground." Namjoon answered, "Even if they did break the rules, it wouldn't matter. The rules don't apply to Neutral Ground." 

"The underground fight club was created by me, but it's taken on a life of it's own. Every single member of every gang has agreed that in there, gang wars don't apply. It's almost like a safe haven." Jin explained. 

They've run out of options. All of them knew that. 

The fight was in a few hours, and they've run out of options. 

After a few minutes of silence, Jimin spoke up, trying to make his voice sound as stable as possible, as he accepted his fate. 

"If you have to choose between the gang and me," Jimin said in a slightly shaky voice, eyes lowered to the ground as he tried to blink back tears, lump growing in his throat, "Don't choose me. The gang is more important." 

Before anyone could say anything, Jimin grabbed the boxing gloves from beside him and stood up, "I'm going to get changed for practice." 

"Jin, we have to do something!" Jungkook almost demanded as soon as the door to the locker room was all the way shut. 

"Kook, we've tried everything! I don't know what else-" 

"So, you're just going to let him die!" Jungkook almost screamed, voice raised, panic in his eyes. 

"You don't think I'm trying?!" 

"Jin, please!" Jungkook begged, "Let me back out of the fight. Please, Jin!"

"Kook..."

Jungkook turned to Yoongi, eyes glossing over, pleading with a strained voice, "Yoongi, please. Please tell me I don't have to fight? Please, Yoongi." 

"Kid..." Yoongi said, voice barely over a whisper. 

The rest of them looked on, tears welling in their eyes as they watched Jungkook, someone who they have only ever see be strong, almost have a breakdown over the thought of losing someone important to him. They watched as he begged Yoongi to tell him not to fight, because Jungkook never disobeyed him. But Yoongi couldn't. He told himself that he would never get in between Jin's gang and Jungkook, especially knowing how much Jungkook looked up to him, and respected him, and took each word he said as gospel. 

But he couldn't tell Jungkook not to fight. This wasn't his area to interfere in. All he could do was be there for him. 

"I can't lose him, Yoongi! Please don't make me! Please, please." Jungkook begged, a lump growing in his throat. And with a soft, broken voice, he said, "I can't lose him when I just got him....I love him.

Their heads whipped up, all of them staring at Jungkook. 

"You what?" Yoongi asked, mouth agape. 

In all of his years that he had known Jungkook, never once did he utter the L word. For Jungkook, showing affection towards them consisted of actions and nothing more. No words. Just respect and playful banter. That's how he showed affection. But hearing those words come out of his mouth.... 

It was a shock to say the least. 

"I love him." Jungkook repeated, sincerity and pain lacing his every syllable. 

"Kook." Was all Yoongi could say, not knowing what else to.

"Don't make me fight, Yoongi. Please." 

Yoongi looked at Jin, who was equally as shocked. But Jin knew that if Jungkook could put his ego aside and admit the fact that he loved Jimin....Then it must be serious. 

Gang or not, the people that mattered the most to him were sitting in this room. They needed to be protected first.

"If we don't find a way to get Jimin out of the ring before the fight, you can pull out." Jin said, standing up with his phone in his hand, "End of discussion." 

 

~~~

 

Jimin couldn't help but let out a laugh while Jungkook was bandaging up his hands.

"What is it?" Jungkook asked, looking up at the pink haired man. 

"It's ironic isn't it?" Jimin said, humourlessly, "I'm usually the one doing this for you." 

"Is this how you feel every time you do it?" Jungkook asked, "Helpless." 

"Usually," Jimin said with a nod, "It's worse when you know that all you can do is provide first aid." 

Jungkook stopped. 

"What's wrong?" Jimin asked. 

"Run away with me, Jimin! Let's get away from all of this. They can't hurt us if we just go and keep going and never come back." Jungkook said, words tumbling out, rushed and clumsy. 

"You won't be able to," Jimin said, "Your home is here. Your home is Yoongi, and Hoseok, and Jin, and the gym! You won't last a day without them, baby. You know that." 

"I'll be okay," Jungkook said, "I'll have you." 

"You already have me," Jimin said, cupping Jungkook's cheek with his bandaged hand, "I'm not going anywhere and neither are you. What kind of people would we be if we just ran away from every fight? That's not us. That will never be us." 

Jungkook leaned into his touch, eyes fluttering shut, helplessly. He needed to do something! He couldn't fail him! He couldn't just sit here and watch Jimin die in that ring. He needed to pull out of the fight. 

He needed to save Jimin. 

"Through thick and thin," Jimin said. 

Jungkook didn't finish the sentence. 

"Through thick and thin..." Jimin repeated, slowly now, using the words as an anchor for both of them. 

"And everything in between." Jungkook finished, leaning forward and pressing their foreheads together. 

"This is the thick." Jimin said, "We can get through this." 

"Jimin, the fighters out there-" 

"I've seen them in action," Jimin reminded him. 

Jungkook pulled away, the gravity of the situation just settling in as the cheers from the crowd seeped through the small crack of the locker room door.

"I'm not letting you do this," He said, shaking his head. 

"Kookie? What are you doing?" Jimin asked, confused, blinking blankly.

"Protecting you." Jungkook declared, walking to the door, forcing it open. The show if strength making the door creak even over the cheers of the crowd. 

"Jungkook don-" 

Before Jungkook could even step foot outside the door, Jin and Yoongi came rushing in. 

"Stop!" Yoongi said, pushing him back into the locker room, slamming the door shut. 

"What's going on?" Jimin asked, panic and a little hope glinting in his eyes. 

"He's not fighting!" Jin said. 

"What?" Jungkook asked, "Did you tell Ja-" 

"Didn't have to!" Jin said, "He did it himself." 

"...That's-" Jungkook started to say. 

"I know." Jin said with a nod, "Shady." 

"Something's not right." Jungkook said, "Why would he call off the fight if he didn't get what he wanted?" 

"He didn't call it off, so much as someone killed the fighter." 

"They what?!" Jimin said, shooting up from the bench. 

"He got into a 'car accident'," Yoongi explained. 

"Did you-" 

"It wasn't us." Jin said immediately, "If we did that, it would be breaking the rules, which means that we would forfeit the match." 

"So you think that Jaehwan killed him?" 

"It's a possibility," Jin said.

"But why?" Jimin asked. 

"Look it doesn't matter right now!" Yoongi said, "What's important is that you're not fighting and Kook still gets to fight the match." 

Jimin plopped himself down on the creaky wooden bench, letting out a huge sigh of relief, a weight being lifted off his chest. 

Jungkook sat down next to him, pulling his boyfriend into his shirt, hugging him tight. 

"I'm not going to die." Was all Jimin could say against the warmth of Jungkook's body.

 

~~~

 

"Jaehwan!" Kang called out, practically running into the room, swinging the door open, chest heaving from the run up the stairs. 

"What is it, Kang?" Jaehwan answered, glaring at the interruption. 

"It's Jimin." 

"What? What about him?" Jaehwan asked, interest piqued. 

"Archer found something!" 

"About what?" 

"Jimin wasn't fired." Kang said and dove into the whole story. 

"Well, well, well," Jaehwan smirked, "Seems like he isn't so innocent now is he?" 

"What do you want to do?" Kang asked. 

Jaehwan tapped the wooden table once, twice, and then again a third time; thinking. He was biding time, trying to come up with something to do. 

"Call Kit." 

"W-What?" Kang stuttered. 

"Did I fucking stutter?!" Jaehwan said, words cutting like a knife, "Call Kit and stop the fight!" 

"But what about-" 

"Do it, Kang or I'll get someone else to do it and you know what would happen then..." Jaehwan threatened. 

With a shaky hand, Kang took the phone out and called Kit.

"It's off." Was all Kang said before hanging up and looking at Jaehwan, "Now what?" 

"Now, we destroy JK, and let him destroy the gang himself." Jaehwan said, almost gleefully, "This just got a whole lot more interesting." 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

"I can hear you thinking from all the way over here," Jimin said as he laid down on Jungkook's bare chest, hearing the constant thump, thump, of his heart beating. It soothed him. 

"It's a once in a lifetime opportunity, so take advantage of it," Jungkook joked, one arm behind his head and the other on Jimin's waist, absentmindedly rubbing small circles into his clothed torso. 

"What are you thinking about?" Jimin asked. 

Jungkook sighed, not answering him. 

"Kookie," Jimin said softly, leaning his head up to look at Jungkook in the eyes, "It's me. You can talk to me about anything." 

He sighed, giving in. He'd always give in if it was Jimin. 

"What if this is a mistake?" He asked. 

"What is?" 

"Us." 

Jimin pulled away like he got burned. He sat up, looking at Jungkook with wide fearful eyes. Did he find out? No way. He couldn't have. This...This couldn't be it...Could it? 

"W-What?" Jimin stuttered. 

"I didn't mean it like that-" Jungkook was quick to say, leaning up on his elbows. 

"How else could you have meant it?" Jimin accused, scared. Did...

Did Jungkook not want him anymore? The mere of thought of that was scary to Jimin. He didn't know what he would do if Jungkook didn't want him. He had become too attached to him. He fell so quickly, he didn't even realise it up till now. He was so into him, so into his life and his friends, and the gang...He didn't care about anything other than being Editor and being with Jungkook.

"Minnie-" Jungkook sighed, sitting up fully now, tired hand on his face, "I can't do this right now." 

"Fine," Jimin said, getting off the bed. 

"Where are you going?" 

"Giving you time to figure things out!" Jimin almost screamed.

Truth be told, he didn't want to leave. He never did. He couldn't remember the last time he slept on his own bed. Ever since Jungkook and him got together, they've done everything together. Hell, he had his own drawer at Jungkook's house! They went to the gym together, came back together, ate together, slept together, watched television together...They were only ever apart when Jimin had 'errands' to run. Aka, they were only ever apart when he had to go update his findings on his laptop. And each time he did that, bile would rise up in his throat, guilt suffocating him which each stroke of his pencil, each tap of the keyboard, each time he updated the board in his room. Safe to say, Jungkook has never been in his house. Jimin would keep making up excuses, going so far as to distract him so he wouldn't bring it up again. 

"Jimin, I didn't-" 

"Do you not want me anymore?" Jimin asked, voice pained and broken. 

"What?!" Jungkook said, "What are you even-" 

"Is that what this is? Is that why you think we're a mistake?" 

"I don't think we're a-" Jungkook started to say but got cut off. 

"How long have you been feeling like this, huh, Jungkook? Is it me? It is because-" 

"I don't think we're a mistake!" Jungkook said, almost screaming, "For fuck's sake, Jimin, I love you! Why the fuck would I think we're a mistake when you're the best goddamn thing to ever happen to me!" 

"W-what?" Jimin said, dropping the pair of pants in his hand on the floor. 

"You're the best thing that ever happened to me," Jungkook said. 

"N-No, the-the other thing..." Jimin stuttered, "What's the other thing you said?" 

"O-oh." Jungkook said, suddenly realising what slipped out, "I, uhh, yeah, I love you." 

"Oh." 

"You don't have to say it back or anything, obviously I wasn't going to tell you like this, I mean, I just-" 

Jimin crossed the room, walking with a purpose in mind. He took Jungkook's face in his hands and crashed their lips together. Jungkook froze for a second, but was quick to respond. He moved his hands to Jimin's waist, pulling him closer as their lips moved together. 

Jimin pulled away first, too quick for Jungkook's liking, leaning his forehead against Jungkook's.

"I love you too." Jimin said to him, a smile on his face.

"What?" Jungkook asked, wondering if he was just imaging the confession.

"I said I love you too," Jimin told him, smile only growing. 

"Say it again," Jungkook said, a dopey grin on his face. 

"I love you." Jimin said. 

"Again." 

"I love you." 

"Again," Jungkook said, smile growing and growing, knowing that he would never be able to hear enough of those words. 

"Kook!" Jimin giggled. 

The laugh died down, enveloping them in silence. 

"I don't think you're a mistake. Neither do I think that we're a mistake," Jungkook said, pulling Jimin closer to him.

"Then what was that-" 

"I'm scared, Jiminie," Jungkook admitted, "I've never been scared of anything before, but now...Now I'm terrified." 

"Terrified? You? What of?" 

Jungkook let out a shaky breath. He's never had to be...open about his feelings before. It was always brushing it off to one side, or locking it up in a box somewhere is his mind until night had fallen and he was all alone in the dark. But being open to someone else was new to him. He wasn't even this open with Yoongi. The most he would do is talk in metaphors, or even riddles. But talking about feelings outright was something new to him. 

"Kookie?" Jimin said, softly. 

"I wonder if...bringing you into this world was a mistake," Jungkook admitted, "Last night was...." 

He couldn't finish. 

"You didn't bring me into anything," Jimin said, cupping Jungkook's cheek with his soft palm, "I'm here by my own accord. If I didn't want to be here, I would have upped and left a long time ago. I'm here because I want to be. We're a family now, and we don't leave family behind." 

"Stitch is a wise man," Jungkook joked. 

"He's an alien." Jimin said with a grin. 

Jungkook smiled, small and reserved. 

"What is it?" Jimin said. 

"Jaehwan isn't going to stop." 

"I know." 

"He might hurt you again," Jungkook said. 

"I know that, too," Jimin said. 

"I don't know if I can protect you," Jungkook admitted in a small, guilty voice. 

"We protect each other." 

"You put too much faith in me." 

"It's because I love you," Jimin told him. 

"If you get hurt, I'll never be able to forgive myself." 

"You can't beat yourself up for every scratch I get," Jimin told him, "Just you being here with me is enough, Kook. I don't need protection 24/7." 

"Jimin, you don't understand-"

"The big fight is in 6 days. Focus on that, not on me. We have a gang to save," Jimin told him. 

"Jaehwan is capable of so much more than what we saw!" Jungkook said, trying to get Jimin to understand the urgency of the situation. 

"And when he strikes, we'll be prepared." Jimin told him calmly, "What's the point of worrying over something we don't have control of, Kookie? We're here now, aren't we? We're alive! We're healthy! And most importantly, we have each other. Through thick and thin..." 

Jungkook sighed, knowing that Jimin was right. But he couldn't help but worry. Was this what it was always going to be like? Avoiding one disaster only to stumble upon another and another one after that? Was their whole life going to be like this? 

"We're going to be okay," Jimin said like a promise. 

"How can you be so sure?" 

"Because I love you and you love me." Jimin told him. 

"First you steal Stitch's line and now Barney's?" Jungkook said with a smile, worrying dissipating from him, as if it never existed. 

"You know Barney?" Jimin asked with an amused smile. 

"Used to watch it everyday when I was a kid," Jungkook told him. 

"What else don't I know about you?" Jimin asked, fascinated. 

"That I love you," Jungkook answered. 

He rolled his eyes animatedly, enjoying the show of love. 

"You're such a cheeseball," Jimin scoffed playfully. 

"Yeah, but you love me," Jungkook said with a grin, pulling Jimin towards the bed and climbing on top of him.

"I'm thinking it over," Jimin teased, looping his arms around Jungkook's neck, softly carding his fingers through the hairs at the nape of his neck. 

"Are you now?" Jungkook replied lowly, as he leaned forward into Jimin. 

"Changing my mind already," Jimin said softly, eyes darting between his honey brown eyes and soft, plump lips.

Jungkook closed the gap between their lips, capturing Jimin into a searing kiss, filled with passion and love. It wasn't wet,or needy, or messy. It just was. It was perfect. The things left unsaid, shared fears that were unvoiced, the fact that they always had to keep up a united front and be strong together, the emotions that they could never voice out were all poured into this one kiss. 

"Jungkook." Jimin groaned, muffled by Jungkook's lips on his. He pulled away, chest heaving, breaths coming out in little pants. 

They stared at each other, not needing words to communicate, both enjoying how far gone the other was, and how much they both wanted each other. 

This was different than the other times they were intimate. There was an energy here that didn't exist before, and they both knew it. 

"Please." Was all Jimin said. 

"Please what, baby?" Jungkook said, cocking an eyebrow, wanting to hear the words come out of Jimin's mouth. 

Jimin flushed a bright red, and Jungkook couldn't help but stare at his skin, eyes trailing down to Jimin's V neck shirt, watching as the blush spread, wanting nothing more than to rip his shirt off and devour his boyfriend until he was a squirming, moaning mess. But he could wait. He wanted Jimin to say the words. 

"Please, Kook, please," Jimin all but begged, bucking his hips up into Jungkook, hoping that Jungkook would get the hint and just do something. But he didn't. 

"Say it." Jungkook demanded in a low, gravelly voice, the sheer dominance travelling straight to Jimin's groin, fuelling his arousal, making Jimin moan.

Jimin says nothing. Instead, he leans up, chasing Jungkook's lips with his. Jungkook gives in, slotting his lips against Jimin, holding his waist down with one hand to steady him and to stop Jimin from bucking his hips trying to get any friction he could muster. Jimin pushes his tongue past Jungkook's lips, kissing Jungkook hot and needily, showing him just how much he wants him hoping that Jungkook would take mercy on him and touch him instead of teasing. 

But Jungkook doesn't. 

He pulled away, panting slightly eyes never leaving Jimin's plump lips, wanting nothing more than to see his swollen red lips over his cock, sucking, bobbing, worshipping Jungkook's erection. 

But he waits.

"Say it." Jungkook demanded again. 

"Please-" Jimin whined. 

"Say what you want or I stop," Jungkook threatened, "Right now." 

"F-Fuck me." Jimin said. 

"What was that, sweetheart?" Jungkook teased. 

"Fuck me! Please, Kookie! Fuck me! Wanna feel your cock right now! Wa-Wanna feel you cum in me and want to keep it in me forever, fuck please!" Jimin begged, lewd words and moans tumbling out of him, desperation only increasing along with his blush from embarrassment. But, god did he love it.

"With pleasure," Jungkook said, a grin spread across his face, cock chubbing up in his boxers, a hard outline beginning to show.

Jungkook pulled his boxers off first, tossing them to one side, leaving Jimin fully clothed. His erection was leaking, now fully hard. 

Jimin groaned in pleasure, arching his back up as he licked his lips in anticipation. 

"Get me ready to fuck you, baby," Jungkook said. 

Jimin scrambled up, getting on his knees immediately, facing Jungkook's angry, red member. He licked his lips as his hand gently palmed the erection, hearing Jungkook hiss above him. He slowly dragged his finger up and down the length, hearing Jungkook more and more impatient. 

"What? Forgot how to suck dick already?" 

Jimin grinned, knowing that he was succeeding in riling Jungkook up.

"You really want to tease me right now, baby?" Jungkook threatened. 

"Depends..." Jimin said with a grin, "What are the consequences?"

"Get on all fours." Jungkook commanded, growling, "Now!" 

Jimin turned around, shaking his ass in the air as he felt the bed dip behind him. 

"Count." Was all Jungkook said before Jimin felt his underwear be ripped from him, pooling around his knees. 

Jimin gasped as soon as he felt Jungkook's palm hit the soft, supple skin of his ass. 

"I said, count!" Jungkook growled out, spanking him again. 

"O-One." Jimin breathed out, holding back a moan, feeling his cock leak with every spank that he was getting. 

Smack. Smack. Smack. 

"F-Five." Jimin said, his cock drooling in between his thighs now, slicking them up with pre-cum. 

"Think you can remember how to suck dick now, huh?!" Jungkook challenged, breathing a little heavier, his own cock neglected in between his thighs. 

Jimin nodded. 

"Turn." Was all Jungkook said as he held his dick in his hand, stroking it once, twice, waiting for Jimin and his mouth. 

Jimin's hands immediately reach out to grab Jungkook's hardness. Jungkook throws his head back and lets out a long, drawn out groan. 

"So hard," Jimin moaned, leaning forward to give the head of Jungkook's cock kittenish licks.

"For you." Jungkook said, "Only for you." 

That's all that Jimin needed. He leaned forward, engulfing Jungkook's cock in his mouth as he bobbed his head a couple of times. Jungkook's hands reach instinctively to Jimin's hair, fisting it as he bucked his hips into Jimin's mouth. As if on cue, Jimin drops his hands, letting Jungkook use his mouth as he pleases. 

"Fuck baby, you're so fucking gorgeous," Jungkook hisses, "Fucking look at you, so pliant for me. All for me, isn't it, babe? You're my good little cockslut, aren't you sweetheart?"

Jimin grinds his cock against whatever fabric that was underneath him. He didn't know if it was his boxers that was still around his knees, or the bedsheet or even the blanket. All Jimin knew was that he needed stimulation and since Jungkook loved to tease him, this was all he was going to get for now. 

Jungkook was sure that he was about to cream himself from the sight of his cock in Jimin's mouth. His plump, red, swollen lips wrapped around his dick as if all Jimin was made for was sucking his dick. Spit and cum pooled around his mouth, eyes wide and shimmering with the sole intention of pleasing Jungkook. He could thank all the stars in the universe individually and it still wouldn't be enough for the blessing that was his boyfriend in front of him. 

Jungkook pulled his cock of Jimin's mouth with a pop and turned him around, smacking his ass, hearing Jimin whine and beg for Jungkook to do something. 

He reached over to the bedside drawer, pulling out a condom and lube. 

"No condom." Jimin stuttered.

"What?" 

"I'm clean. Are you?" Jimin asked. 

"Yeah," He breathed out. 

"Then don't use a condom," Jimin said, turning to face Jungkook, "I trust you." 

Jungkook leaned down, pressing a soft, chaste to Jimin's lips. 

"I love you." Jungkook said. 

Jimin smiled at him, "I love you too. Now stick your dick in my ass." 

Jungkook laughed, uncapping the lube and drizzling it onto his fingers. 

He circled Jimin's rim, getting it nice and wet before slowly pushing one finger in, slowly thrusting it in and out until Jimin was begging for a second, begging for more, begging for Jungkook to fuck him and make him scream with his cock. Jungkook added a third slicked up finger, thrusting them hard and deep, just touching Jimin's prostate enough to tease him, but not enough to make him cum. Jimin's squirming under him, rutting against both Jungkook's fingers and the bedsheet, desperate to get himself off. Jungkook smirked down at Jimin, feeding off his desperation. 

"P-Please," Jimin pants, "Want you in me." 

Jungkook groans at the desperation and lust in Jimin's voice. How could he say no?

He slicks his cock up with lube, stroking it once, and then a second time and lines himself up with Jimin's hole that was clenching and unclenching at air, desperate to be filled. Jungkook couldn't help but smack Jimin's ass once and then bottom out, hearing Jimin groan and moan in pleasure at the slight burn and the tightness and fullness that he feels from Jungkook's cock. 

Jungkook slowly starts thrusting, only increasing in speed. He grabs onto Jimin's still clothed hips and sets a fast and brutal pace, balls slapping Jimin's skin with each fast and hard thrust. Jimin moans in pleasure, gasping and groaning at the sensations; lips bright red from biting on it too hard. 

It doesn't take much for both of them to fall apart, from the teasing to the trembling and the begging for more and more. Jungkook is hitting Jimin's prostate dead on, the tight heat inside Jimin, ass clenching at every thrust, it's a wonder they hold off as long as they do. 

When Jimin cums, it's hot, and wet, and tight around Jungkook, moaning and screaming his name so loudly, Jungkook was sure that the entire city knew who he belonged to. The sight and sound of it was enough for Jungkook to cum inside Jimin, deep, hot and wet.

Jungkook gets them cleaned up and hops back into bed, tired and fucked out. Jimin slots himself easily onto Jungkook's chest, finally ripping his own sweaty and cum stained shirt off and throws it on one side. 

"I'm scared too," Jimin finally admits. 

"What?" 

"You're not the only one who's scared, Kookie," Jimin said, "I'm scared too. Not only of Jaehwan, but of everything." 

"What's everything?" 

"What if..." Jimin started but trails off. 

"What is it?" 

"What if I screw up somehow?" Jimin said, "You wouldn't want me anymore." 

"Listen to me, baby," Jungkook told him, "There's nothing you can do, ever, that would make me stop loving you. When I say that I'm here through thick and thin, I mean it. I mean every single word. I love you too much to let you go over one mistake." 

"Promise me?" Jimin asked, needing this more than ever.

"With all my heart and everything in me," Jungkook answered, placing a soft kiss on Jimin's forehead. "Through thick and thin." 

"And everything in between." Jimin finished. 

 

~~~~

 

Jin entered the house, exhaustion weighing down on him like never before. It seeped into his bones, coursed through his veins and weighed down on his shoulders. 

His phone wouldn't stop buzzing and at this point, he couldn't take it anymore. His eyes watered from frustration and the sheer tiredness that he felt. All around him, all he felt was darkness seeping through his skin, clouding his vision. 

He couldn't do this anymore. All of this was just becoming too much! Watching his friends and loved ones hurt and get hurt wasn't a life that he wanted, or even dreamed himself of ever having.

This life that he lived was both a blessing and a curse. Being a gang leader wasn't what it was all cut out to be. Sure, he had millions and millions of dollars in his bank account, and power over the entire city, and the fear of people everywhere. But shit, there was so much that sucked. Having to play god, having to constantly looking over your shoulder for danger, having his phone go off every second of every minute of every hour of every single day! Not having trust in his life, because just like sleep, that too was a luxury. He could count the amount of people he truly trusted with one hand and for him, that was the saddest part. 

He didn't dream of this life. This was never something that he wanted. Hell, before his father died, this world was something that he would only see in movies, and even then, he never liked it. It was thrusted and forced onto him, snatching away his innocence and childhood as a return payment. 

He wanted mundanity. He wanted to be normal. He wanted to go to college, and struggle with a major. He wanted to live in a dorm room, and live out his dream. He wanted to go to culinary school, and eventually open up a small cafe, and work there. 

But this...All of the violence and the blood and the gore, and never being able to truly be happy and content, or even have a moment to breathe. It was all too much... 

"Jinnie, you're home." 

He whipped his head up at the sound coming from his room, small and soft and a little groggy. His knee jerk reaction was to reach for his gun in his pocket, but he stopped himself when he saw Namjoon rubbing his eyes at the door. 

"I didn't know what time you would be back, or whether or not you had even eaten, so I ate half of the dinner but I can heat up the other half right n-Oh." 

Jin didn't care about anything else. He strode across the room and pulled Namjoon into a hug, eyes tearing up as he leaned his forehead against his shoulder, needing his love and warmth and comfort right now. He didn't care about anything else. He didn't care if he looked pathetic or not, which he knew that he probably did, but he needed this. He needed Namjoon. 

He was convinced that in the multitude of universes, Jin was always meant to find Namjoon. In any world, in any scenario, Jin and Namjoon were meant to be together. As fucked up as his life was right now, the one thing he did right, was finding Namjoon. 

Namjoon was his home. 

"Baby?" Namjoon asked softly, confused, pulling Jin in towards him, knowing enough to know that he needed this.

He could feel his shirt dampen with silent tears that Jin was shedding. He knew Jin enough to know that if he wanted to open up about something, he would. Right now, with the weight of the world on Jin's shoulders, and the expectations and stress that he was feeling, Jin didn't want to talk. And that was okay too. 

Namjoon would be there for him regardless of the situation, or explanation.

He pulled Jin inside the room and laid him down on the bed gently. He pulled his shirt off, tossing it to one side, along with his pants and grabbed his sleep clothes from the cupboard, changing him. Once he was changed, Namjoon climbed into bed, letting Jin climb on top of him, tear stained cheek resting on Namjoon's shirt as he shut his eyes tightly, willing sleep to come to him. 

Namjoon stroked his back, "Go to sleep babe, you're okay now. I'm right here with you. I'm not going anywhere." 

Just as Jin was allowing the darkness of sleep to envelope him, he heard, in a soft, soothing voice,

"We'll get through this together, darling."

 

~~~

 

Taehyung took it upon himself to tell everybody the truth even if Namjoon didn't want to yet. And that's exactly the attitude he took with him when he exited the house this morning, and now here he was pushing the doors of the gym open and walking through it with determination and a confidence that he's never seen before, only to walk into an empty gym with no one but Yoongi and Hoseok there.

"Where is everybody?" Taehyung asked, clutching the thick book under his armpit. 

"Jimin and Jungkook are having coffee and Namjoon is forcing Jin to take a day off for the first time ever," Hoseok asked, "And we're here, and now so are you!" 

"A hi would have been nice," Yoongi teased. 

"Hi." Taehyung said. 

"Hey," Hoseok greeted back with a grin. 

"Something on your mind, kid?" Yoongi said, cocking an eyebrow. 

"Kind of, but now I'm unsure." 

"What does that mean?" Hoseok asked him, cocking his head slightly. 

"That I don't know if I should say anything or not." 

"Well, it's better to say it, and get it off your chest, than let it weigh you down constantly," Yoongi offered.

"Where did you read that from?" Hoseok asked, slightly amused. 

"Got it on a rerun episode of Oprah," Yoongi mumbled, looking down at the ground, suddenly finding the piece of string incredibly interesting.

"You're adorable," Hoseok cooed. 

"What were you saying, Tae?" Yoongi asked, quick to change the subject, not wanting his rosy cheeks to become the next topic of conversation.

"Do you remember when Jin asked Namjoon and I to look over the accounts?" Taehyung started, pulling the book out from under his armpits. 

"Yeah?" 

"Well, we found some money missing and at first we thought that maybe we calculated wrongly, but we went over the numbers over and over again," Taehyung explained, "And the money was still missing, so we started investigating even further and found that this was happening for a couple of months now." 

"How much?" Yoongi demanded to know, through gritted teeth as he looked over the numbers. 

"It started off with petty amounts, in the hundreds, and then it started getting bigger and bigger." Taehyung said, pointing out different figures in the book, "And now over hundreds of thousands are missing." 

"Do you know who's doing it?" Hoseok asked. 

"No," Taehyung said, shaking his head, "I thought I could pinpoint it to a specific person but the more I looked over the accounts, the more confused I am about who's embezzling. It could be anyone. They're covering their tracks really well."

"Do you think it's Jaehwan?" Hoseok asked. 

"How would he even get access to the money?" Yoongi asked, "He couldn't have." 

"We all know he's capable of much more than just murder, Yoons." Hoseok said. 

"W-What's worse than murder?" Taehyung stuttered, unsure if he wanted a reply or not. 

Hoseok shot him a sad smile, "Let's put it this way - We call murder, mercy killing for a reason." 

"T-Torture?" Taehyung asked. 

Neither one of them said anything. They knew better. 

"Thank you for this, Tae," Yoongi said, looking over the numbers again. 

"What now?" Taehyung asked out of curiosity. 

"Now we look into it," Hoseok answered, "Discreetly." 

"Does Jin know?" Yoongi asked, glancing up from the book to Taehyung. 

"No," He answered with a shake of his head, "I haven't told him yet. I was hoping he would be here so I could but I guess I have to catch him tomo-"

"Don't tell him," Yoongi said, cutting him off, "Not now at least. He has enough on his plate right now." 

"You're going to keep this from him?" Taehyung asked, taken aback. 

"At least until the fight is over," Yoongi said. 

"I have a theory that this is somehow connected to the fight," Taehyung told him, "I think if you wait too long, this might just get worse." 

"The fight's in 5 days." Hoseok said. 

"I just think that it's worth looking into now." Taehyung told them, "Or else it might just be too late." 

 

~~~

 

 

They were sitting opposite each other in the cafe that Jungkook loved with drinks in front of them and a red velvet cake in the middle. 

"Are you sure you can't come to the gym after this?" Jungkook asked. 

"I have some errands to run," Jimin lied, pushing the bubbling guilt down. 

"For Yoongi?" Jungkook asked. 

"Him and mine." He answered with a small smile, fingers curling around the coffee cup. 

"I have to train, otherwise, I would have joined you." Jungkook told him.

"There's five days till the fight," Jimin said, trying to be casual, as he took a sip of his extra hot latte. 

"I know." Jungkook said with a nod. 

"How are you feeling?" 

"Fine." 

"Kookie," Jimin said, cocking his eyebrow, "It's me." 

Jungkook sighed, hesitating for a second before responding, small and quiet, as if it were a secret that he had emotions, "I'm nervous." 

"What about?" 

"Everyone's relying on me and I can't screw this up..." He replied, face scrunching up. 

"You're putting too much pressure on yourself, Kookie," Jimin told him, frowning. 

"How can I not, Jimin? You and I both know what's on the line!" Jungkook said, "The gang, our pride and dignity, the one place we actually feel safe...There's too much on the line for me not to win. I'm not called Unbeatable JK for nothing." 

"But that's the thing, you're not just Unbeatable JK. You're Jungkook! And Jungkook is allowed to make mistakes and fail." 

"I'm only Jungkook to you and the guys, not to everyone else." Jungkook said, "No one else knows me like the six of you do. You more than anyone should know that."

"Regardless of what happens, you have to know that-"

"There is no other option other than winning." Jungkook told him, hard and fierce. 

"Okay, Jungkook." Jimin said, backing off, taking a sip of his coffee. 

They sat in silence for a couple of minutes before Jungkook sighed. 

"I didn't mean to-"

"I know." Jimin said, nodding with understanding. 

"It's just that, everyone's been on edge lately and after Hobi told me about his theory with Jaehwan and you, it's-" 

"Theory? What theory?" Jimin asked, eyebrows shooting up, fear washing over him. 

"About the fight?" Jungkook said it like a question, "Did he...not tell you?" 

"No." Jimin answered, "What is it?" 

"Hobi said that he thinks that Jaehwan changed the fight list. He doesn't know how he did it, but he did. And he put your name there instead of mine so that everyone would focus on getting you out," Jungkook explained, "He never wanted to go through with the fight, but he needed to get us distracted. He thinks you're my weakness." 

"Oh." Was all Jimin could manage. 

"He's both right and wrong." 

"O-oh." Jimin stuttered out, trying to mask his sadness. 

"He's right to be scared," Jungkook explained, "I'm not going to let anything distract me now. I'm going to win this fight and drive him to the ground and make him beg each and every one of us for forgiveness for everything that he did." 

Jimin nodded, eyes on the foam of his latte. 

"He's wrong about one thing though." 

"About what?" Jimin asked. 

"You being my weakness." 

"What?" Jimin said, lifting his head up to look at Jungkook. 

The one thing he loved about Jungkook was how he looked at him. He couldn't get enough of his eyes. It was his favourite feature of Jungkook's. The way it shimmered and shined, like there were galaxies in there just waiting to be discovered in his doe, honey brown eyes. Jimin could stare at them forever and still not get bored. The way there was always love and admiration whenever Jungkook looked at Jimin. The way his harsh, angry, narrowed eyes would always soften just at the mention of Jimin's name, the way they would never hold any emotion other than happiness, love, and warmth when looking at Jimin... 

And that's exactly what Jimin could see now - softness, warmth, love, and happiness. 

God, Jimin was so in love with Jungkook, he couldn't even put it in words. But he felt it. So, so much. 

"Jaehwan couldn't be more wrong about you being my weakness," Jungkook told him, "You were and always will be my strength. I fight because I want to come home to you. I fight because I know that with this gang, with us, you'll always be safe. I fight because I want to protect my family, and you've become more of my family than anyone else has. It's because of you that I'm training harder, and wanting now, more than ever to win." 

Jungkook reached over the table and placed his warm, calloused hands over Jimin's soft and supple one. 

"I love you, Jimin," He said with a soft and gentle voice, "And I want you to know that nothing will ever change that. I'm going to come home to you a winner." 

 

~~~

 

"The fight's in five days." Kang said. 

"I know." 

"You still haven't told anyone about Jimin." Kang said, confused.

"I know."

"This could literally break them!" Kang told him, "Why aren't you doing anything?!" 

"It's not the right time." Was all Jaehwan said. 

"There's only five days left!" Kang said, desperately. 

"Exactly." Jaehwan said with a nod, "There's too much time." 

"JK would literally go out of his mind after finding out that Jimin's only with them for information about an article!" Kang said, "Why aren't you telling him?" 

"If I tell him now, he'll be too angry at the time of the fight," Jaehwan said, "He would crush us." 

"When are you going to tell him?" Kang asked. 

"When the time is right." 

"And when is that?" 

"Soon, Kang," Jaehwan said, a sinister smirk growing on his face, "Very, very soon."

 

 

Chapter Text

"You seem really cheery and happy today," Jimin said, leaning against the pole of the ring, looking up at a sweaty Jungkook who had a smile on his face. 

"I feel like we've had this conversation before," Jungkook teased. 

"You've been happier and happier since I met you." 

"Can you blame me, though?" Jungkook said, readjusting the worn away white bandages on his hand, "Ever since you came into my life, it's been different." 

"Different?" Jimin said, slowly, as if examining the word, "Good different or bad different?" 

"Look around, baby," Jungkook said, "It's definitely a good different." 

"You're not scared anymore?" Jimin asked. 

"Scared of what?" Jungkook asked, "The fight?" 

"No." Jimin said with a shake of his head. 

"Then what?" 

"Dying." Jimin said in a voice so small that if Jungkook wasn't close enough, he might have just missed it.

"If you would have asked me a few weeks ago if I was, I would have said no," Jungkook admitted, climbing down from the ring, standing in front of Jimin. 

"Why?"

"When you stare death in the face one too many times, it stops feeling scary and starts to feel like a friend."

"And now?" Jimin asked, softer, voice lower as he stared into the galaxies that orbited around in the deep pools of honey brown that was Jungkook's eyes. 

"Now," Jungkook said in a low, velvety voice as he took a step closer to Jimin, "Now I'm terrified." 

"Terrified?" Jimin said, "Why?"

"I don't know." He said, looking at the man that he had come to love, scared, as he cupped the pink haired's man cheek, needing himself to believe that this is real. That he was in front of him, and that he wasn't going anywhere.

Jungkook had never felt fear like this before. Fear that everything could be snatched away from his grasp in an instant. He didn't to admit it to himself. Didn't want to admit that maybe, just maybe, fear, an emotion that he had never felt before, was something that was becoming more and more familiar to him. 

And so he answered, both to himself and to Jimin, "I've never had something to live for before."

It scared them. The both of them. 

It scared them just how hard and fast they fell for each other. 

Jungkook had never believed in love before Jimin. He'd never thought that someone could come into his life so suddenly, take his heart by surprise, and teach him that he was so much more than he thought of himself. Jungkook thought that he was always meant for darkness. That the only touches he would get would be scratches on his back and bruises from being held while he fucked them into the nearest surface he could find. He always thought he was meant for one night stands, and fleeting thoughts. Thought that he was meant to fulfil sexual desires, and be the object of lust. Thought that the only affection he would get, was from Yoongi, Hoseok and Jin. But then Jimin came into his life, and suddenly he felt emotions he had never felt before. He felt happy. And that was something that he thought he would never feel again. He found a home. And if he was being honest with himself, he thought that this home could maybe last forever. He really does think that he found a forever home with a forever family that only seemed to be growing. 

Maybe...Just maybe, Jungkook didn't want to feel afraid anymore. 

Jimin had learnt to almost live with the guilt. But that's only because he knows just how much he loves and cares for Jungkook. And sometimes he feels like a hypocrite and like an imposter, and even like a liar. He felt like this because he kept telling himself he loved Jungkook and yet, he was collecting this information and getting ready to write the article. And he hates himself for it. Every single time he sits on his bed, surrounded by the boards and documents that needed updating, he wanted to scream! He wanted to run! Run away from his apartment and back into the safe haven that was Jungkook's arms. He barely spent time in his own home because of it. He hated the fact that he was doing this, but he had to remind himself that sometimes, to reach your dreams, hard decisions have to be made. And this was one of them. 

He had gotten much better at not thinking about the article when he was with Jungkook and the rest of the boys. But when the time came to go home...That's when his stomach was churn, and bile would rise up in his throat, and he had to stand there and pretend like nothing was wrong, when all that he wanted to do was tell Jungkook the truth. But he couldn't. He had to do this. The article needed to be written. He wanted that Editor's position! He wanted his own office! He wanted the pay raise! He wanted the spinny chair and the secretary! He wanted it all. He wanted Jungkook with him in his office, telling Jimin just how proud he was of him. He wanted everyone to understand why he did what he did. 

He loved them. Jimin really, truly loved them. He felt at home here in the gym. He was eternally grateful that Yoongi took him in and even more grateful that everyone else accepted him. Even if it did take time, and effort, they were a family now. All 7 of them. They fell into perfect harmony together. It was like somehow, the universe knew that the 7 of them were meant to be together, and had them find their way to each other. Jimin didn't want to be the reason that they separated. He couldn't be! He cared about them too much. 

It will work out. He will make sure of it. 

This was his family. They had become his family. He wouldn't be the reason that his family broke up. 

 

~~~

 

Jimin reached into his pocket and fumbled around until he found the keys to his house.

"Really, Jimin? You couldn't have found your keys in the elevator?" Taehyung grumbled, rolling his eyes. 

"Shut up, Tae! It doesn't make a difference!" He replied playfully, looking for the key to open his front door. 

"We wouldn't be having this conversation if you did," Taehyung told him. 

"It's called spending quality time with your best friend." 

"It's called being an idiot." Taehyung countered.

Jimin fumbled with the keys for a while until he found the right one. 

"See! It was literally just one minute! One more minute of quality time with me." He said pointedly as soon as he got the door open, holding it open with a flourish as Taehyung entered, shaking his head and rolling his eyes. 

"You still haven't cleaned up I see." 

"And you still haven't stopped judging me, I see," Jimin said, closing and locking the front door behind him. 

"It's my right as best friend," Taehyung said, plopping himself down on the couch, "If I don't tease you, who else will?" 

Jimin walked to set next to Taehyung but froze mid-step. 

"What? What is it?" Taehyung asked, noticing the puzzled, and almost fearful look on Jimin's face. 

"I.." Jimin said, scrunching his face up as if deep in thought. 

"What?" 

"I could have sworn I left my laptop in my room and not out here..." Jimin said. 

"Maybe you took it out and just forgot about it," Taehyung said, brushing it off. 

"Yeah. Maybe." Jimin said, still unconvinced, thinking back to the last time he was in his house, trying to retrace his steps. 

"You're being paranoid Jimin," Taehyung told him. 

"Yeah..." 

"Oh come on, what do you think happened? Someone came in here and rearranged your house? If someone did come in here, instead of your laptop being out in the open, it would been gone!" Taehyung said, trying to rationalise it so that Jimin would feel better. 

"You're right," Jimin said, shaking his head and plopping down next to Taehyung on the couch, "I guess I'm just being paranoid." 

"Mhmm." Taehyung hummed in agreement, leaning into the soft pillows of the couch, practically sinking in. 

"Can you blame me though?" Jimin said, turning his head slightly to look at Taehyung, "With everything that's going on with Jaehwan..." 

"I've been meaning to speak to you about that." 

"What's up TaeTae?" 

"Your article." Taehyung said, treading lightly, "Are you really going through with it?" 

Jimin sighed, "Yeah. Yeah, I am." 

"Do you have to?" Taehyung asked in a small voice, as if scared to even say anything. 

"What?" 

"It's just.." Taehyung started, sitting up straighter now, turning his whole body to face Jimin, "Jiminie, do you remember when I told you about wanting to stop my one night stands, and maybe try a relationship?"

"Yeah." Jimin said, mirroring Taehyung's posture, sitting up straighter now. 

"Do you know why I slept around a lot?" 

"I don't know, Tae." 

"It took me a lot of soul searching to come up with the reasons, but Jimin, it was because I felt like I didn't belong," Taehyung admitted, "It was painful to even think that. But I had to. I couldn't go on trying to get approval or love from people I didn't know. Yeah, it sucked that my parent's disowned me and even though I thought I was over it, I clearly wasn't." 

"Tae..." 

"No, wait, let me finish." Taehyung said, tears pricking his eyes, "Yes I was scared when you started going to the gym more often, when you started spending time there than with me, and I lashed out in the worst way possible. That's when I realised what I did. Jimin, you and Namjoon were the only family I had and I was scared that you guys would abandon me too." 

Taehyung swallowed harshly, as if there was something in his throat that he was trying to remove. 

"And then I met them. All of them. And I thought that they would be like those typical moody, dangerous, uncaring gang members that were only yes men...You know like the ones we see in movies." Taehyung said, words spilling out of him, tumbling messily, clumsily, "But Jimin, they're so much more than that. They treated me like family even though they didn't know me. They accepted me, loved me for me, didn't care about my sexuality or how much I could fuck everything up. They took a chance on me! On us! Jimin, they care so much, and so deeply about us..." 

"Tae..." Was all Jimin could manage.

"The six of you are all the family I have," He said, blinking back tears, "I don't want to lose this. I don't want to lose you, or them."

He pulled Taehyung into a hug so tight, Taehyung was convinced that he was never broken to begin with. They stayed like that, in each other's arms, not saying a word, not even needing to. They've been together long enough, through ups, and downs. They've seen each other at their worst, and cheered each other on at their best. They've seen each other through days where there was no one there but them. They've been in each other's life long enough now to be able to communicate with just a look and a curve of the mouth. 

"Tae, this job has been my dream ever since I could learn how to write," Jimin explained once he pulled away, wiping Taehyung's tears with the pad of his thumb. 

"I know," Taehyung replied softly.

"They'll understand." Jimin said, "They will! I know they will. Once I explain everything to them, they'll be okay with it." 

"If you found out that Jungkook was with you because Jaehwan told him to be, how would you feel?" 

"What?" Jimin asked, eyes growing wide. 

"Wouldn't you hate it? Wouldn't you hate him?" Taehyung said, "Think about the betrayal you would feel, Jimin. Now think about how Jungkook, and everyone else would feel knowing that you're only in the gym to gather information to put on blast across the entire Nation."

Suddenly, it felt like a huge weight was crushing Jimin's chest. Guilt. An emotion Jimin has become increasingly familiar with.

"Being editor has always been my dream." Jimin said. 

"Are you trying to convince me or yourself?" 

Jimin hesitated. And opted to say nothing instead. 

So they sat in silence. 

"No one but you, me and my boss knows about this, Tae," Jimin said. 

"If you want us to still have a place in that gym," Taehyung said, voice barely over a whisper, "Either tell them, or quit the job for good." 

"And be unemployed?" 

"That's a bullshit excuse and both of us know it." Taehyung said, eyes narrowed, voice hard, "Yoongi has been giving you things to do, and has been paying you better than your old salary anyway." 

"Being editor-" 

"Stop, Jimin." Taehyung said, not knowing if he was referring to Jimin sounding like a broken record, or about the situation in the gym. But it applied to both as far as Taehyung was concerned. 

Taehyung looked over Jimin's shoulder at his room, and let out a sigh. 

"Just.." He said, trailing off as he stood up, "Think it over." 

"If I tell them, it will be after the fight," Jimin said, head hanging, not able to meet Taehyung's eyes, "I wouldn't want them to get distracted, and be the reason why they lost everything." 

"You're going to tell them?" 

"If." Jimin repeated, emphasising the word, "If I do...I would after the fight." 

~~~

 

He had just finished updating the latest findings on his laptop, not daring to enter his bedroom, Taehyung's words hanging heavily around the air of his small apartment that was beginning to feel foreign to him. He couldn't remember the last time he had spent the night in his own bed. 

Jimin's phone started to buzz. He grabbed it from the coffee table, glancing at the time on his watch - 10 minutes to midnight. 

"Hello?" He answered. 

"The bed feels empty without you." 

"Sleep on the couch and maybe you wouldn't feel that way," Jimin teased back with a smile on his face. 

"I miss you." 

"I miss you too, Kookie," He giggled. 

Jungkook let out a huge exaggerated sigh, "Why aren't you here right now? I have half a mind to come to you instead." 

"No!" Jimin said quickly, the words on the laptop suddenly feeling bigger. 

"I just realised that I've never actually seen your place," Jungkook said.

"I prefer yours instead," Jimin said, "Feels more...homey." 

Jimin couldn't help but look through the crack of the bedroom door that was opened at the board that held pictures, newspaper clippings, post it notes with his scratchy handwriting and string linking events together. What would they think of him if they ever saw this? What would Jungkook think of him? 

...Was any of this worth it? 

"Baby? You there?" Jungkook said, statically. 

"Yeah. Sorry," Jimin replied, "Just, really tired." 

"What did you do today? I barely got to see you after lunch," Jungkook said and Jimin could hear him get comfortable on the bed. 

"Just, ran some errands for Yoongi. Taehyung came over and we talked for a bit, and now I'm just finishing up last minute stuff," Jimin replied vaguely. 

"Taehyung? What did you guys talk about?" 

"It's a best friend thing," Jimin teased. 

"Jimin," Jungkook said. 

"Kookie." He replied in the same tone. 

"Can I tell you something?" 

"Anything." 

"Do you ever just feel like some people are meant to be in your life?" Jungkook asked, "Like regardless of the situation you were in, and in any universe, some people are just fated to meet?" 

"Fate and destiny work in weird ways," Jimin said, "But I believe in them." 

"That's how I feel with you," Jungkook admitted in a shy voice, as if he was revealing a deep, secret. "When I saw you, there was just this pull, you know? Something that told me that if I didn't talk to you, or get to know you, I would regret it for the rest of my life. And talking to you was so easy. There was never a time where I felt like I had to hide something from you, and never a time where I felt uncomfortable. Getting to know you was fate, but falling in love with you is a blessing I'll never take for granted." 

"Stay there." Jimin said, shutting his laptop. 

"What?" 

"You can't just say those words and expect me not to kiss you and tell you how much I love you," Jimin told him, balancing the phone with his shoulder and putting his shoes on. 

Jungkook chuckled, "Maybe this was my plan all along. Make you come and cuddle me to sleep." 

"Oh we're going to do so much more than just cuddle," Jimin teased sultrily. 

"Fuck." Jungkook swore, a wave of arousal hitting him, "Don't make me start without you." 

"If you do then maybe I'll tie you up instead," Jimin teased, feeling proud when he heard a sharp inhale from Jungkook. 

"How quickly can you get here?" 

 

~~~

 

"Did you get the money?"

"I did." 

"Good. Meet me at Pier 16. There's a pushcart with a blue umbrella on it, we'll meet there." 

"I still don't understand why I'm even helping you. What do I get out of this?" 

"When everything goes to shit, and all hell breaks loose, I'll won't kill you first."

"I-I'll be there." 

"Two hours. Don't be late." 

 

~~~

 

36 hours. 

They had just a little over 36 hours before the fight. 

"The fight's tomorrow night, Kook! What are you doing?" Yoongi chastised. 

Jungkook just panted, putting his hands by his sides and hanging his head in defeat in the middle of the ring. 

"Yoongi..." Hoseok said softly, like a warning to take it easy.

"No, he's right." Jungkook said, shaking his head, "I just..." 

Yoongi could see how Jungkook was beating himself up just from a scrunch of his face. He was being too hard on the younger boy. Sometimes, Yoongi forgets that just because Jungkook was in a gang and virtually one of the best fighters in the whole country, and could take care of himself, at the end of the day, Jungkook was also just 22 years old. He was still that boy who yearned for love, and came to his doorstep at 15, bruised and beaten in tattered clothes. 

"Take five, Kook." Yoongi said in a gentle voice, putting a supportive and apologetic hand on his shoulder.

Jungkook got out of the ring, walking towards the bleachers where Jimin held out his water bottle. 

"You need to calm down, Yoongs." Hoseok said as Yoongi walked towards him, "He's trying his best." 

"I know," Yoongi said with a sigh, "There's just a lot on the line." 

"He knows that." Hoseok said pointedly, "He could have pulled out of the fight or even not have volunteered, yet there he is in the ring, fighting for all of us. You don't think he knows what's on the line?"

"I've been kind of hard on him, haven't I?" Yoongi said, guilt lacing his words.

"There's a line between being hard on someone and being destructive." Hoseok warned, "Don't cross it." 

"I should go apologise...." Yoongi said, biting the bottom of his lip. 

Hoseok nodded. 

The one thing that Hoseok admired in Yoongi was how open minded he was. It was one of the many reasons he fell in love with him. Yoongi didn't ask many questions, nor did he talk a lot, but when he did, it was deep, and always contributed something. Yoongi was the kind of person who didn't care about where someone has been, but is more focused on the kind of person they want to become. He would listen to problems, with absolutely no judgement, and be a shoulder to cry on. Yoongi could take criticism like no one Hoseok has ever seen before. He would constantly strive to become a better person and could always admit when he was wrong, even if he didn't like it. 

That was the man that Hoseok fell in love with. And the man that he falls for more and more everyday. 

Hoseok watched with a smile on his face as Yoongi walked up to Jungkook and placed a hand on his shoulder, mumbling a couple of words. Jungkook smiled up at him and shook his head slightly. 

Jimin stood up and walked over to Hoseok. 

"Didn't feel right to impose like that," He said as he sat down next to Hoseok, "Felt a little too intimate." 

"They're great, aren't they?" Hoseok admired, 

"Yoongi's like a father to him," Jimin said.

"Feels that way sometimes, doesn't it?" Hoseok said, "But he's a lot more than that and I think they both know it." 

"So," Jimin said, "What's Yoongi's story?" 

"What?" Hoseok asked, peeling his eyes away from the two boys to look at Jimin. 

"I just meant that, I know how you came to the gym, and I know how Jungkook came to the gym," Jimin explained, "I just realised that I don't know how Yoongi came here." 

Hoseok leaned back against the palms of his hands, looking across the room at the man he loved, "His story isn't like ours. It almost gives you hope, the way he navigated through life and made it to where he is right now." 

Jimin listened intently. 

"His parents died when he was 5 and from there he shuffled through different orphanages. At age 13, he decided that enough was enough and just left." Hoseok told him, "And it's not like anyone came looking for him, after all, the system doesn't care about any of them, so why should anyone else. Yoongi started working. No one questioned it. They gave him little allowances here and there and some of the places he worked at were nice enough to give him food and shelter wherever he was. He kept saving up whatever little money he had. One day, while he was serving, this old man came up to him and asked him how old he was and what he was doing working. Yoongi told him everything - from his parents, to the orphanage, and even told him that this was where he lived now. " 

"Did he get caught?" Jimin asked, worried. 

"No." Hoseok answered with a knowing smile and a shake of his head, "The man adopted him. Took Yoongi home, gave him a bed to sleep in, food to eat, clothes to wear, and even saw him through all of high school. He had a big heart, and made Yoongi the man he is today." 

"What happened to him?" 

"When Yoongi was 17, the man died, but he left everything to Yoongi, including a house and this gym." 

"So, that's how he got the gym..." Jimin said, looking around the place. 

"Yoongi can let go of many things, but never this gym," Hoseok said, "It meant a lot to the man and it means a lot to him now." 

Bile rose up Jimin's throat at the thought of Yoongi finding out about the article and how the focus of it was on this very gym that they were stood on. But Jimin pushed it away. 

He looked around the gym at how Jungkook and Yoongi were training in the middle of the fight, how Hoseok was looking at them with love, adoration and admiration in his eyes; happy. He looked at how Namjoon and Jin were intense, crouched over a big piece of paper, no doubt talking about strategy, but still, how the little touches and the way that they would stop, look at each other and smile, a private smile reserved for only the both of them, and know that whatever happens, they would be okay. He noticed the way that, although there were 6 of them here, they was still something missing and they all knew that it was Taehyung. They wouldn't be complete without the 7 of them, and that was only made possible because of the gym.

Jimin couldn't do it anymore. 

Maybe being Editor was his dream once upon a time, but sitting here, right here, right now, he realised that his dream had changed. He didn't care about the article anymore. He didn't care about being Editor anymore. He cared about the 6 of them. He cared about the gym, and the gang. His family. 

He couldn't take the constant feeling of guilt, or how much he disgusted himself just being in his apartment, surrounded by the constant reminders of betrayal and lies that he kept telling the people he cared about the most. He couldn't do it. 

He made a promise to himself, that after the fight, he would come clean to them. To all of them. 

But first, he had to quit. He had to call his boss up and quit his job. 

He thought that he would feel sad about it, but he didn't. Oddly enough, he felt relief. 

"Jiminie?" Hoseok called out, worry written on his face, "You okay?" 

"Better than before, Hobi." Jimin said with a smile, "So much better." 

 

~~~

 

Taehyung came to the gym a couple of hours later after work, carrying a box. 

"Hey guys." 

A chorus of 'Taehyung!' and 'Hey Tae' rang out through the gym. Taehyung couldn't help the boxy smile that graced his face as he walked across the room, clutching the box in his hand tight to his chest. 

Jimin almost bounced excitedly on his feet, impatiently waiting to tell his best friend about quitting his job. 

"How come you're never this excited to see me?" Jungkook teased, wrapping his sweaty arms around Jimin's waist from the back, resting his chin on his head. 

"You're sweaty." Jimin said, trying to wriggle out of his grip.

"Thought you loved me like that," He teased, nuzzling the crook of Jimin's neck. 

"You need a shower." 

"Only if you join me." 

"You're awfully flirty today," Jimin said, turning around in his arms, snaking his arms around the back of Jungkook's neck. 

"Can you blame me?" He said, cocking an eyebrow, grin forming on his face, "Have you seen my boyfriend? How could I not be?" 

"You're such a cheeseball," Jimin said, rolling his eyes, cheeks tinting pink. 

"Yeah, but you love me." 

"Says who?" Jimin challenged, cocking his eyebrow. 

"You last night. Multiple, multiple times." 

"Kookie!" 

"And again tonight." He said with a smirk.

"Can you let me go now?" Jimin asked. 

"Not until you give me a kiss." Jungkook told him, puckering his lips. 

Jimin rolled his eyes but more than willingly, and almost embarrassingly quickly tip-toed, and slotted his lips with Jungkook's. He almost forgot about where he was, and in whose company he was standing in. His hands fisted the hairs on the nape of Jungkook's neck and pulled him closer, lips sliding over each other, lovingly and passionately. 

"Did my arrival make you that excited?" Taehyung teased.

Jimin pulled away quickly, stepping away from Jungkook, clearing his throat and willing the heat in his cheeks to go away. 

"Damn, I was enjoying the free show," Hoseok said, leaning back against his chair. 

"He started it." Jimin said, walking to Taehyung. 

"What's in the box Tae?" Namjoon asked. 

"Oh, this," He said, almost forgetting about it, "Found it outside. I thought you might have ordered something or.." 

"It's probably mine," Yoongi said, standing up to get the box from Taehyung, "I needed new Boxing Pads since Mr Destroy Every Equipment over here-" 

"He says destroy, I say gives you a chance to buy a new one..." Jungkook said with a cheeky grin. 

"Do you know how much I've spent on new boxing equipment because of you?!" 

"New is always better," Jungkook preached.

"Where can I find a new Jungkook?" 

"The same store that I'll find a new Yoongi!" 

"There's no way you can replace me," Yoongi said playfully with a scoff, starting to unwrap the box, not paying attention to it, but instead to Jungkook who he was teasing.

Jimin pulled Taehyung aside. 

"What is it?" Taehyung asked, glancing over to see if anyone noticed. 

"I thought about what you said yesterday," Jimin said quietly, "And you're right. I don't know why I've been pushing this Editor thing. I clearly hate it. I hate it every single time I have to go home and lie to everyone. I hate it when I have to update the findings. I always feel so shitty. Lately, I've been dreading going home because of it." 

"So, you're going to stop?" Taehyung asked, not daring to be hopeful.

"Yeah, Tae," Jimin said with a grin, "I'm going to quit tonight. I think I'm going to come clean after the fight." 

"Jimin that's-"

"Huh, that looks like Jimin's apartment..." Namjoon said.

"What?" Jimin asked, peeking around Taehyung, only to see everybody huddled around the box. 

"Jimin, is this true?" Yoongi asked. 

"Is what true?" He asked, walking to where everyone was standing. 

"These pictures..." Jin said, laying them out in front of them, "Are these true?" 

It was like Jimin couldn't breathe anymore. With each step he took, his heart started beating faster, and faster, and faster, and faster; until all he was doing was staring at the pictures on the other side of everyone. 

And that's when he saw it. 

It was his house. His apartment. His laptop. His walls. His kitchen. His everything. 

It was everything he didn't want them to find out. 

Laid out in those pictures was the board, full of his handwriting on the post it notes pasted over the newspaper clippings, and the pictures, and the strings linking events together. 

In other pictures there was his laptop, opened up to the documents that he laid in findings in. 

In all of the pictures, every single one of them, there were things that he hid from them. 

"Jimin..." Jungkook said, looking up at him, eyes wide, almost teary, mouth hanging open as if he couldn't process what he was seeing. 

"I-" Was all Jimin could manage out. 

"Namjoon." Jin said, serious now, "Is this or is this not Jimin's house?" 

Namjoon looked helplessly at Jimin, unsure of what he was supposed to say. On one hand he had one of his best friends, someone who he had known for years, and on the other, he had his boyfriend, someone who he loved. What was he meant to do? What did they expect him to say? 

"It's mine." Jimin answered, swallowing harshly. 

"Wh-What is this?" Jungkook asked, stammering.

"I can explain if you would just-" 

"Was this all we were to you?!" Jungkook screamed out, betrayal washing over him, "Just information to collect?! Just pawns in your little adventure game?!" 

"Jungkook, please just let me-" 

"No!" Jungkook refused, throwing the pictures in his hand on the ground, as he stormed out of the gym. 

"Jungkook, please!" Jimin pleaded, running after him. 

Jungkook refused to listen to him. He didn't know where he was headed, but all he knew was that he needed to get away from Jimin. He couldn't stand to look at him right now, let alone be in the same room as him. He needed to think and he wouldn't get much of that done sitting in that gym and staring at those photos, torturing himself. 

Jimin ran a little faster, reaching his hand out to stop Jungkook.

"Don't touch me!" Jungkook screamed, pulling away from his touch as if it burned him. 

He could feel pain shoot through his chest, worse than all of the hits that he had taken. Worse than the stitches that he had gotten, and worse than when he broke bones. 

Why was this pain hurting so badly? So differently?

"Jungkook," Jimin pleaded, voice breaking, eyes brimming with tears. 

"I said, don't touch me!" 

"Kookie-" 

"Don't call me that!" Jungkook screamed, seething. 

"Just let me explain," Jimin begged, walking after him. In a soft voice, he added, "Please."

He understood now. 

Jungkook understood why it hurt. He understood the pain in his chest, but god, he wished that he didn't. He wished that he remained ignorant. 

It was heartbreak. 

Funny thing is, Jungkook could have sworn that he didn't even have a heart. But things change. Changed. 

His world flipped upside down when the pink haired boy entered his life. Just a few hours ago Jungkook couldn't wipe off the smile on his face, and now...Now he didn't even remember what it was like to smile.

"Just tell me one thing," Jungkook said, turning around to face the shorter boy, trying his best to ignore the tears in his eyes. 

"Anything." Jimin promised, thinking that it was his chance to explain. 

"Was it all a lie?" Jungkook asked in a pained voice, the pain in his chest growing and spreading, "The hugs? The kisses? The nights that we spent together? The talk about our future? The I love you's and the promises we made each other...Did all of that mean nothing to you? D-Do I mean nothing to you?"

"I.." 

"You know what," Jungkook scoffed, a bitter laugh tumbling from his lips, "I don't want to know. I can't trust anything you say right now. I can't trust you!" 

"Please jus-" Jimin started to beg, hot tears flowing down his cheeks. 

"We're done." Jungkook said, turning his back on Jimin, not wanting him to see how broken he had left him, "Goodbye Jimin." 

And just like that, Jungkook walked away from the one good thing in his life.

Jungkook walked away from the Jimin who showed him that everything Jungkook touched wouldn't turn into ash, like Jungkook thought that it would. Jungkook walked away from the same Jimin who used to tell him that he was worth more happiness that there were stars in the universe. Jungkook walked away from the Jimin that became his flashlight in the world of darkness that he was used to. He walked away from the Jimin that used to hug him so right, and tight in his embrace that Jungkook was convinced that he would never be broken again. He walked away from the Jimin who made him whole. 

He walked away from the only man that he had come to love.

Jungkook should have known that he wasn't made for a happy ending. He was never made for happiness. He was never made for love. 

All he was made for was destruction. 

He should have ignored the flutter of his heart and the warmth of his chest whenever he saw Jimin. 

All Jungkook was good for was causing pain and destroying everything in his wake. 

He was never made to love. 

 

~~~

 

"Kang." Jaehwan called out where he was seated, a neat scotch in his hand and smile on his face. 

"Yes?" Kang answered almost immediately, walking to stand in front of Jaehwan. 

"Is it done?" Was all he asked. 

"Yes, Jaehwan." Kang replied with a nod, "I placed the box with the pictures in front of the gym an hour ago." 

"Good." Jaehwan said with a nod, bringing the crystal glass to his lips and taking an almost victorious drink. 

"Jaehwan, can I ask you something?" Kang asked. 

He nodded. 

"Why now? Why not tomorrow? Why not before the fight?" 

"If I gave him the information the other day, he would only become angrier as the days went on, and by the time he fought, he would have a lot of pent up frustration to release. It would be too soon and we would lose everything we have," Jaehwan explained, "And if I gave it to him tomorrow, just before the fight, he would try to push it out of his mind. It's a risk I am not willing to take."

He took another sip from his drink. 

"But now," Jaehwan said, a smirk on his face, "He would think that there was enough time. The heartbreak would crush him. He wouldn't be able to concentrate and when it comes for the fight..Well, let's just say that I'm going to enjoy bringing Kim Seokjin to his knees as I break him of everything he has."

Jaehwan emptied the glass, slamming it down on the table. 

"I would say may the best man win, but I've already won."

 

 

Chapter Text

35 hours 58 minutes Until The Fight.

"Jungkook, please!" Jimin said as he ran after Jungkook who was storming away. 

The rest of them stayed frozen on the spot, pictures in hand, betrayal washing over them. 

Jin didn't know how to feel. All he felt right now was anger. Anger at himself, anger at Jimin, anger at Taehyung, anger at the fact that he didn't trust his gut instinct. Anger at the fact that he let himself get caught up in the pretty strung up words and the innocent smile, anger at the pink bubblegum hair and squeaky laugh that made him trust Jimin...

Anger at Namjoon.

"Did you know?" Jin asked, not even bothering to face Namjoon who was looking through the pictures. 

"What?" Namjoon asked, looking up at Jin who was still staring down at the pictures. 

"I asked if you knew." Jin said, calmly. 

Yoongi looked between them, anxious, as if awaiting the inevitable. 

"No, Jin. I really didn't-" 

"Don't lie to me." Jin warned him, voice slightly raised, steel coating every word. 

"Jin, I'm serious I didn't-" 

"I said, don't. lie. to me." Jin told him, throwing the pictures on the ground with force, making them scatter with a thud. He emphasised every word, venom coating them, slicing through the air. 

"Jin, he really-" Taehyung started to say but cut himself off when Jin looked at him, eyes narrowed, and piercing like daggers. He immediately cowered with fear, taking an unconscious step back. 

"I suggest you shut your fucking mouth before I get someone to cut your tongue off." Jin threatened. 

Namjoon wanted to defend Taehyung, he really did. But for the first time since he met Jin, he was scared of him. And he had never felt fear quite like this before. 

Jin finally looked at him, almost as menacingly as he looked at Taehyung. 

He should hate him. Jin should really hate him right now. 

But he couldn't. 

His eyes softened up almost immediately as he looked at Namjoon. 

Fear. That's the only thing he saw. He promised himself that the one thing he would do is protect Namjoon the way that Namjoon protected him. He wanted to be his safe haven, the person he goes to when he's having a bad day...His everything. God dammit! Jin didn't know what was real and what wasn't anymore. All he knew was that he didn't want to see fear in Namjoon's eyes anymore.

He took a step forward and Namjoon took two back, almost stumbling, fear only building and increasing. 

"Get out." Was all Jin said. 

"Jin, please just-" Taehyung tried to say but Namjoon grabbed him, shaking his head. 

"Tae..." Namjoon said softly, voice shaky. He was scared. And he hated it. 

Namjoon couldn't be here another minute. Not for anything else other than the fact that there was already so much hurt in the room, he could see it in everyone's eyes. But when he saw Jin look into his eyes, all he saw was confusion and anger. The hurt only came when Jin saw how scared Namjoon was. Namjoon couldn't be the reason for Jin's sadness. He could never live with himself. 

"Joon just let me explain-"

"Not now, Tae," Namjoon said, pulling him towards the door, "Not now." 

The door closed with a squeak leaving behind Yoongi, Hoseok and Jin. 

"I should have listened to you, Jin." Yoongi said, "You always did have a better judge of character than I did." 

"We couldn't have known." Jin told him. 

"Do you think all 3 of them-" 

"Do you have a reason to believe that all 3 of them aren't involved in this?" Yoongi said with a scoff, "Two accountants and a journalist. Fucking mundanes bested us! The best gang in the entire city!" 

"Who do you think sent it?" Hoseok asked. 

"Who else?" Jin said. 

"No way!" Hoseok said, "You don't think that-" 

"With love, from Jaehwan." Jin spat, throwing the empty box on the ground. 

A heavy silence encompassed the room. 

"Jungkook's not going to be able to fight tomorrow." Yoongi said. 

"That's up to him." Jin told him. 

"He's heartbroken." 

"I know." Jin said, empathetic. 

"You're heartbroken too." Hoseok said. 

"I'm fine." 

"It's okay to-" 

"I said I'm fine." Jin told him through gritted teeth.

"Jin you don't have to hide," Yoongi said in a soft voice, "We all know how much you cared for him and how much you lov-" 

"Enough!" Jin almost screamed, trying to sound authoritative, but instead his voice came out shaky, and cracked. He couldn't do it. He couldn't hide his emotions anymore. He loved him. He really, really loved him. But he didn't want to talk about it. He couldn't think about how the first person he decided to put his trust in betrayed him. He couldn't think about how all of his suspicions about not being able to live a life apart from the gang world were true. He couldn't think about how he knew that he was never made to love, or was never made to be happy...He could have had a normal life.

Could have. 

But this was his reality - Betrayal. Guns. Not being able to trust. Not being able to love. 

"...enough." Was all Jin could muster out. 

And the worse part of it all, wasn't the fact that he still loved Namjoon, it was that little bit of hope that he had that maybe, just maybe, Namjoon actually loved him enough to come back.

 

~~~

 

24 hours 22 minutes Until The Fight

He didn't know where he was. 

He just walked, and walked and walked until he saw a bar. He knew he shouldn't, but at this point, he would do just about anything to numb the pain in his chest. It hurt. Badly. 

And now here he was, in god knows where, on probably his fourth or fifth...or was it sixth...He didn't know. Come to think of it, he didn't know much. All he thought he knew turned out to be a lie 

He thought he knew that his boyfriend was deeply in love with him. Lie

He thought he knew that he had a family in the gym. Lie. 

He thought that things were finally looking up for him. Lie. 

He thought his happiness was real. Lie.

And still, the weight on his chest didn't leave, despite the many, many drinks he had consumed. The shards of his broken heart were stabbing him and he didn't know what he could do about it. 

He looked around the bar, not oblivious to the lustful eyes that were scanning him up and down. He could literally walk up to anyone right now and take them home, fuck them and hope that the mere thought of pink didn't want to make him cry anymore, but for some reason, even thinking about it felt dirty. 

He took his wallet out, stumbling on his feet, the alcohol hitting him all at once, yet the pain in his chest throbbing, demanding to be felt. He slammed the money on the counter and attempted to get his bearings as he left the bar. 

He could have walked for minutes, hours, or days at this point, he didn't know. All he focused on was putting one foot in front of the other, and attempting to walk in a straight line. 

He loves me. 
Left foot forward 


He loves me not.
Right foot forward.


He loved me. 
Left foot forward.


He loved me not.
Right foot forward.


He lied to me. 
Left foot forward.


He never cared about me.
Right foot forward.

He stopped. 

"He never cared." Jungkook said, as if it were a sudden realisation, stopping in the middle of the dimly lit road, as he stared up at the building that him and Jimin used to share. 

How did he get home? When did he...

He shook his head, the stabbing pain in his heart only growing and growing as he stepped closer and closer to the building. He was sobering up. He didn't want to. If he sobered up, it meant that he would have to think about it. And right now, with everything going on, he couldn't allow himself to be distracted. The gang needed him. Jin, Hoseok and Yoongi needed him to be on his A game and he... 

There was so much going on. This was the last thing he needed. 

He couldn't think about it. He would do what he was known for doing - push it down and hope he never sees Jimin again. 

The elevator opened up to his floor and he stumbled out, almost tripping on nothing. He had to take a deep breath in, eyes closed in frustration, and try and steady himself. He had a long day ahead and he couldn't deal with this right now. 

"Kookie." He heard, soft and small, shaky, like he had been crying. 

And it was like his heart broke all over again. 

He didn't want to open his eyes. If he opened it, he would have to see him again. He would have to relive what he had been trying to forget in the first place.

"Jungkook." The voice said, a little louder now, desperation lacing his every syllable, "Please." 

He opened his eyes. He always would if it was him asking. 

"You need to go." Jungkook replied, not sparing him a second glance. 

Jimin got off the floor, shakily. His eyes were red rimmed, nose a deeper shade of red, and tears staining his cheeks like all he had been doing was crying. 

"I'm not leaving until you let me explain." Jimin said, finally standing up on his feet, in front of Jungkook's door. 

"Then you'd be here forever." Jungkook told him, trying to mask his own sadness, hoping that it came out as aggressive as he wanted it to be. 

"I'll stay forever then." Jimin said. 

Jungkook sighed, walking to his door, "Move." 

"No." Jimin told him, standing his ground. 

"Either you move and let me in, or I leave." Jungkook gritted out. 

"Please, Ko-" 

"Don't fucking call me that!" Jungkook screamed.

"Just let me-" 

"Don't you think you've done enough, Jimin?" Jungkook said, venom in his voice, "Don't you think you've hurt us enough? Hurt me enough? Can't you fucking leave?! Just let me think!" 

He wanted to hurt Jimin just as bad as Jimin hurt him. He wanted him to feel what he made Jungkook feel, broken heart and all. 

But when he saw Jimin's face...The hurt shining in his eyes from what Jungkook just said...He didn't feel satisfaction. He didn't feel proud. All he felt was regret. He wanted to take those words back, pull Jimin into his arms until both of their broken pieces mended itself again. 

But he didn't. 

He just stood there, in front of someone he once called his boyfriend, chest heaving, heart broken and tears pricking both of their eyes. 

"I really did love you." 

"You're a good actor." Jungkook scoffed, "Now move." 

Jimin sighed, knowing that he wouldn't win this one. So he moved to one side and watched as Jungkook struggled with getting his keys into the hole. The door opened and Jungkook was just about to go in.  

Jimin couldn't just stand there and watch as the love of his life gave up on him. He needed Jungkook. There was a connection between them that ran deeper than just love. It was the way that Jungkook made fireworks go off in his heart when he saw him. It was the way his heart soared with his smile, and his skin burned, and tingled with his touch. It was the way that with just one look, both of them understood each other. 

It was something that could never be faked.

He needed him to understand why he did what he did. He needed Jungkook to understand that his feeling's were real. From his kisses, to the pillowtalk, to the promises-

Promises. 

Without even realising, Jimin stepped forward and said,

"Through thick and th-" 

"Don't you dare!" Jungkook warned, raising his voice, jaw tight and taut, locked in place, anger and betrayal washing over him, "Don't you dare finish that sentence, Jimin. You owe me that much." 

"You promised." Jimin reminded him, voice broken and pained, strained, desperate, just begging for a chance to explain his side.

"That was before I realised that our entire relationship was based on a lie!" Jungkook nearly screamed. 

"I made a mistake-" 

"Yeah, well, so did I!" Jungkook snapped, knowing that once he said this, there was no taking it back....He was angry. Furious! 

The betrayal, the lying, the making empty promises and making Jungkook believe that he was worth so much more than what he actually was.. 

Ever since he found out, it was like an arrow was shot through his heart. He couldn't stop second guessing every moment they spent together. Every kiss, every whispered promise, every stolen glance, every night that they laid together talking about a world that they would build for themselves, their future, their house, the kids that they would one day get...Every wish, every confession of love, every touch in the dark.

Every single memory. He was second guessing everything! 

....Was any of it real?

With venom and pain that he had tried to hide, lacing every single word, Jungkook spat out, "Letting you in was my first mistake, and loving you will be my last." 

Jungkook thought that the worst part of it all would be Jimin's face when he said those words. Seeing tears in Jimin's eyes was always something that he couldn't ever stand; it was worse when he knew he was the cause of it. But it wasn't. He thought that if he made Jimin hate him, then maybe, just maybe, he could reciprocate those feelings too. 

But he couldn't. 

Even after everything, Jungkook didn't hate him. He couldn't physically bring himself to hate Jimin. 

So he did the next best thing -Jungkook left. 

Because the opposite of loving isn't hating - It's leaving.

Without a word, or so much as a glance, Jungkook walked into his house and shut the door behind him, making sure to lock it loudly. 

He couldn't hate him. He wishes he could. Standing here, in the house that held so many memories that they made together, Jungkook couldn't help but tear up. This was something he had to do. He couldn't believe for another second that he was worth the love of someone else.

 

~~~

 

22 hours 28 minutes Until The Fight 

 

"I had a feeling you'd be here." 

"You are the one who knows me best." 

"Well, Jin, I have known you the longest." Yoongi said, walking to sit next to Jin on the edge of the roof. 

"You and Kook have been here since the beginning, haven't you?" Jin said, leaning back against his palms, seemingly uncaring about the world, can of half drunk almost stale beer next to him.

"You haven't been here in a while." Yoongi commented, looking out onto the city lights, vast and wide. 

"Haven't really had a chance to." 

"Haven't had the chance, or haven't had the need to?" Yoongi asked him. 

Jin let out an almost bitter chuckle, "How do you always know when I'm lying?" 

"The same way you always know when I need a drink," Yoongi teased. 

"It's been a while." Jin said. 

"A lot has changed." 

"It has." Jin said, grabbing the beer and taking a long swig out of the can, before offering it to Yoongi. 

Yoongi took a sip and placed the can in between them, almost empty now. 

"Is it always going to be like this?" Jin asked, trying to steady his voice, "Constantly second guessing every single person. Constantly wondering if they're secretly out to get us? Dissecting every sentence, every message, every call, every word they say to make sure there's no hidden meaning? Constantly looking over our shoulder? Never being able to trust anyone?" 

Yoongi said nothing. 

He knew Jin well enough to know that right now, soothing and comforting words wasn't something he wanted to hear. He needed to rant. He needed to get it out of his system. 

So all Yoongi did, was nudge the can of beer towards Jin, and lean back on his palms, looking out at the lit up skyline. 

"I loved him." Jin said, almost slamming the can down on the cement ledge of the roof. 

"Love." Yoongi corrected.

"I don't anymore." 

"When did you start lying to me?" Yoongi said, "When did you start lying to yourself?" 

Jin said nothing. 

"I don't think he knew." Yoongi told him, "Namjoon. I don't think he knew about Jimin." 

"They're best friends," Jin scoffed, "How could he not know?" 

"He didn't know about you until Taehyung told him," Yoongi reminded him. 

"Still, Yoongi..." Jin trailed off, voice soft and strained. 

"Don't push him away, Jin," Yoongi said, "I know you're scared to get hurt like Jungkook did. I know that you're scared that Namjoon would be used against you, but don't let that fear paralyse you. You've been happier ever since he came into your life. Don't let him go."

"Jungkook-" 

"Is a big boy." Yoongi finished for him, "He'd be happy just seeing you happy, and you know that. He's one of the most understanding people that there is. All he wants is for us to be happy." 

"Namjoon would remind him of Jimin." 

"He'll be okay." Yoongi reassured, "He has us. We've always been his family, and we always will be." 

Jin sighed, deep and long. "When did life become so complicated?" 

"The day we were born." Yoongi answered, a small smile on his face. 

Jin looked at him and they both chuckled. They were going to be okay. 

"The fight-" 

"Not now, Jin." Yoongi said, "I know the fight's tomorrow, but right now we need some time to not think about it." 

"We're giving Jaehwan what he wants by doing that, you know?" Jin said. 

"He can think that this is all going to his plan all he wants," Yoongi scoffed, "Tomorrow will change everything." 

"If we lose-" Jin started. 

"Stop." Yoongi said, "Not tonight. Let's just..." 

"Not think about it?" 

"Just for a couple of hours." Yoongi said, eyes fluttering shut as he felt the wind blow against his face. 

Jin sighed. 

"Remember that time when we were happy and none of us were suffering?" Yoongi said, looking at Jin. 

"My memory doesn't go so far back." Jin almost scoffed, shaking his head. 

"It doesn't have to." 

 

~~~

 

14 hours 58 minutes Until The Fight 

 

"Tell me about how you see our future again," He said, grinning from ear to ear as he looked up into those deep pools of honey brown eyes that he had grown to love. 

"Well...When I picture out future, I see a two storey house. A nice, big one! With a fence and a big, green backyard! There'd never be silence in it. We'd have a dog and maybe a couple of kids. But most importantly," Jungkook said, tightening his grip on Jimin's waist as he pulled him closer to his chest, placing a kiss on his pink hair, "You'd be the first thing I see when I open my eyes, and the last when I close them."

Jimin sat up, chest heaving. He brought his hand up to his cheeks and found them wet. He had been crying in his sleep. 

That memory... That was probably his favourite. 

Pillowtalk with Jungkook, laying down on his chest, feeling safe, warm, protected, like nothing and no one could ever hurt him, was the best feeling in the world. 

And now, waking up alone and cold in the mess that he called a bedroom was the complete opposite.

He looked around his room, the board on the floor, post it notes crumpled in the metallic dustbin by the door, string laid out everywhere, pieces of shredded up newspaper clippings strewn carelessly around the floor of his bedroom.

He did this to himself. He deserved this. This was his punishment for lying to them. Honestly, what came over him to think that an Editor's position was the most important thing to him? Why did he delude himself into thinking that an actual family, and people who cared for him, and loved him, and treated him better than any of the jerks in the office did, was worth giving up just for his name engraved onto a frosted glass door? 

He checked his watch - Just over 14 hours to go before the fight. He had to be there. He didn't care how he was even going to get there, but he needed to be there. FOr Jungkook. Even if the man that he loved, hated him. He was still going to support him. 

He reached over to his bedside table and pulled his phone off the charging wire, opening it up and dialling the first number on there. 

"You're awake? This early?" 

"So are you." He replied. 

"How did you sleep?" 

"I think I got a couple of hours in," Jimin said with a sigh, "You?"

"I tried to get some sleep in, but I barely did." He said, voice groggy and gritty, "It's really weird not waking up to any messages. Hobi and Yoongi always text me in the morning." 

"Yeah, I know," Jimin said, "I always have texts from Jungkook too, but today..." 

"He just needs some time, Jimin. All of them do." 

"Tae, is Namjoon with you?" 

"Yeah he is." Taehyung replied.

"Can I-" 

"Now's not a good time, Jiminie," Taehyung told him, trying to let him down as easy as possible. 

"Is he angry?" 

"I think that he's just trying to make sense of everything," Taehyung said. 

"Does he know? About the..." Jimin said, not having the courage to finish the sentence. 

"I didn't tell him everything," Taehyung said, "Thought that you might want to explain your side." 

"He's not up for talking, is he?" 

"I think all he wants right now is the truth." Taehyung said, "He's angry at me too, you know." 

"That makes me feel better," Jimin joked. 

Silence hung in the air, heavy and full of tension and static through the phone. 

"I want to see the fight, Tae." Jimin said. 

"I don't think that's a good idea Jimin, they're not-" 

"I don't care! I want to see it! I have to support Jungkook whether or not he wants me to." Jimin relented.

Taehyung sighed, knowing that he wouldn't win this one, "You don't even know where it's going to be held." 

"Yeah, but I do know that Namjoon has an idea. That's all he and Jin have been planning for the last couple of days." Jimin said. 

"Minnie, I don't think that Namjoon-" 

"Please, Tae." Jimin pleaded, desperately, "I love Jungkook. I really, truly, honestly do. And If I'm not there today...I just know I'll regret it for the rest of my life. I've made enough mistakes with him, don't let this be another one." 

"Talk to Namjoon yourself," Taehyung said, "I'll arrange a meeting. Tell him your side. Don't lie and don't leave anything out either." 

"Thank you, Tae!" Jimin said, "You're the bestest friend anyone could ever ask for." 

Just as Jimin was about to hang up, he heard, "Jimin?"

"Yeah, Tae?" 

"For what it's worth, I don't think Jungkook hates you. I don't think any of them hate us." Taehyung said. 

 

~~~

 

13 hours 43 minutes Until The Fight

 

Jimin sat in the coffee shop, opposite Namjoon, coffee's in front of them and an uncomfortable, tense silence around them. 

"Namjoon I-" 

"If all you're going to do is lie to me, then I don't want to hear it." Namjoon said, stoic, jaw taut. 

"I was going to apologise." Jimin said, suddenly feeling small and ashamed. 

"For which part exactly? The lying to me? The keeping me in the dark about everything? Calling me one of your best friends and still not telling me the truth about anything and everything?" Namjoon listed, voice getting harsher and harsher, "Which part are you apologising for exactly, Jimin?!" 

"All of it." 

Their coffee was getting cold. Neither of them talked. They sat there, both overwhelmed and unable to process what happened last night. Their lives had changed ever since they met the gang, whether or not they wanted to believe it. Trying to regain mundanity and normalcy wasn't something they could just do again. The gang, the gym..All of it, was special to them. The people they had met were special. The memories they made together in such a short amount of time was special. 

The love that they found...Well, special was an understatement. 

"Why?" Was all Namjoon could say. 

"Why what?" 

"Why did you hide it from me? Why didn't you tell me? Why did you keep all of this a secret? Its not just me you lied to, Jimin! It's all of us!" Namjoon said, getting angrier and angrier

"I know..." Jimin said, tears pricking his eyes again. 

"Why, Jimin? Why?" Namjoon said with a sigh, almost defeated.

Jimin looked up at him with glossy eyes, "I never meant to hurt anyone Joon, especially not you." 

"Tae didn't tell me much. He didn't tell me anything, actually. He just kept telling me to let you explain yourself." Namjoon said, "So that's what I'm going to do." 

"You know I almost got fired, right? My boss called me in and almost fired me but I kept begging for one chance." Jimin started, "The first day that we went together to the fight, was the first day I saw Jungkook. I accidentally walked into the room and we talked. I didn't know I would see him again, but I knew that underground fighting was a lot more than just matches, and that's when I decided to write a piece on it. I went back to the same place the fight was held the next day only to find the ring, and the bleachers, and everything just gone. Poof! Just like that. All that was left was a dingy, dirty warehouse. Some guy gave me the address to Yoongi's gym and I went." 

Jimin took a deep breath, looking down at his coffee, unable to meet Namjoon's piercing, narrowed gaze. 

"I didn't know it was Jungkook's gym. I didn't know that I would become so close to them. I didn't know that I would fall in love, and I didn't know that Kim Seokjin was the Jin you were dating." Jimin said, "All I knew was that I needed my job back, and that this piece needed to be good. I talked to Yoongi and told him that I was unemployed. I don't know why, but he decided to trust me. He gave me a job in the gym and I stayed." 

"Why didn't you tell me about Jin?" 

"Because I didn't want you to get hurt." Jimin told him, "The first time I met Jin, he pointed a gun at me. I didn't know what he was capable of. And to be honest, he scared the living shit out of me. He was the only one out of all of them who didn't trust me, or even like me." 

"If Taehyung hadn't told me about Jin, would you have?" 

"Honestly," Jimin said, "No. The further away you were from all of this, the better." 

"That's what Jin said." 

"I'm not going to lie to you, Namjoon. Not anymore." Jimin said, "My entire plan was to get information from the gym, write the article and get out. I didn't expect Jungkook. I didn't even think that I could have fallen in love. All I thought about was my job." 

"You hurt a lot of people, Jimin." Namjoon told him, the two full cups of coffee long forgotten. 

"I was going to quit." Jimin said as if that made up for it, "I told Taehyung yesterday, just before the box came that I was going to quit that night. But then..." 

They fell into silence again. 

"I know that there's a big chance they won't forgive me," Jimin said, "But that doesn't mean that I'm going to stop trying. And it definitely doesn't mean that I'm going to miss the fight tonight." 

"Jimin..." Namjoon said, trailing off. 

"Please, Joon." Jimin pleaded, eyes big, wide and glossy, "Please. I need to see him. I need to support him. Even if it means not talking to him, or putting on a disguise, I need to be there!" 

"I don't even know if it's the right location." 

"I don't care." Jimin said, desperate, "Please." 

"Okay." Namjoon said, "But on one condition."

"Anything!" 

"You're not going alone," Namjoon told him with a smile. 

"Does that mean you forgive me?" 

"I might not fully understand it, but it doesn't make you any less of my best friend. I know that you meant well, and that's enough for me." Namjoon said. 

"What about Jin?" 

"We've been through worse than just a misunderstanding," Namjoon told him, "I'm not giving up on us."

"I'm not giving up on our family either," Jimin said, almost able to breathe again.

 

~~~

 

7 hours 13 minutes Until The Fight

 

His breaths came out in pants, chest heaving, sweat falling from his hair onto the grey cemented floor of the gym. Fists connecting with the bag of sand over, and over, and over, and over again. 

"Through thick and thin-" 

He took in a sharp inhale of breath, punching the bag as hard as could. 

"We're a family now."

He grunted as his fists connected with the bag.

"We protect each other." 

An almost feral scream escaped Jungkook as he pulled his hand back to punch the bag again, wanting nothing more than these memories to leave.

"I love you Jeon Jungkook, with all my heart." 

With all his might, Jungkook pushed his fists forward colliding with the already tearing leather of the punching bag, breaking it open. The sand poured out, unforgiving, as it spread all over the floor. Jungkook couldn't feel his legs, and the next thing he knew, he was kneeling on the floor, with his knees skinned on the sand, and his head hung low. 

 

 

The memories hurt. 

He was hurt. 

He is hurt. 

He still loves him. 

 

~~~

 

4 hours 7 minutes Until The Fight 

 

 

"Did you decide on a venue yet?" Yoongi asked Jin, as they went through some last minute checks. 

"Texted it to everyone already." Jin said, looking through his phone. 

"Even Jaehwan?" 

"He was the first." Jin told him. 

"Which place did you end up going with?" Yoongi asked. 

"The one by Pier 16," Jin answered, "There are about 20 men scouring the place right now, looking for anything suspicious. We should be safe there." 

"If we lose..." Yoongi said, trailing off, not wanting to finish the sentence. 

Jin sighed, "We'll cross that bridge if we ever get to it." 

"Jin, I just..." 

"I know." Jin finished. 

He looked over at Jungkook who was sitting outside of the office, tying his laces, and then looked back at Yoongi.

"How is he?" Jin asked him. 

"Heartbroken." Yoongi deadpanned. 

"Should we change-" 

"Don't." They heard from the doorframe. 

"Kook, we just-" Jin started to say, but Jungkook cut him off. 

"I'm fighting." Jungkook told them, his voice void of emotion. face stoic. 

"It's okay to say that you don't want to fight." Yoongi told him. 

"I've fought with fractured ribs before. This is nothing." 

"A broken heart is worse than a fractured rib." Jin said. 

"I don't have a broken heart." 

"Being in love-" Jin started to say, but Jungkook wasn't having it.

"I can't have a broken heart, because I never had a heart to begin with." Jungkook deadpanned, not wanting to continue the discussion, "I'm fighting, and that's that." 

"Jungkook," Yoongi called out, knowing that the younger would always listen to him, "If you want to pull out, we won't be mad, or sad, or even disappointed." 

"No one's going to stop me from fighting today," Jungkook said, looking Yoongi straight in the eye, "Not even you." 

And with that, Jungkook grabbed the gym bag off the floor and left the gym. 

 

 

 

~~~

 

1 hour 45 minutes Until The Fight 

 

"Jimin, you don't have to do this." Taehyung almost begged. 

"Namjoon's coming too." Jimin said, ignoring him as he grabbed a baseball cap from his cupboard standing in front of the mirror. 

"You don't know what they're going to-" 

"I don't care." Jimin said, pushing his hair back, as he fit the cap on his head, making sure that all signs of pink were hidden. 

Jimin was trying his best to fit in with his black shirt and black pants, and baseball cap, trying to be as inconspicuous as possible. He wanted to blend into the crowd. He didn't want to be the reason that they lost. All he wanted to do was support Jungkook. He wanted to be there. 

He loves him. 

"Jimin plea-" 

Jimin turned around, jaw tight and taut as he said, "Either you come with me, or stay here; because there's no way I'm not going tonight. If they want me out, they're going to have to throw me out." 

Taehyung stood there, in front of his best friend, knowing that trying to talk him out of going tonight would be like trying to teach a horse how to fly - Impossible. 

"He needs me, Tae." Jimin said, "I know that he probably hates me, and wants nothing to do with me, but I know that the love that we shared is real. I promised him through thick and thin, and everything in between...This is the thick." 

Taehyung nodded. 

"You're not going alone." He said, "I'm coming with you." 

"We might get kicked out," Jimin said. 

"I'll bring pepper spray." Taehyung joked.

 

~~~

 

23 minutes Until The Fight 

 

 

Jungkook sat in the makeshift locker room, white bandage in left hand as he attempted, and failed, to wrap his hand. 

He sighed in frustration. He had forgotten how to do this. Ever since Jim-

No. 

He wasn't going to think about it. He wasn't going to think about him. This was probably the most important night of his life, and he had too many people relying on him to screw it up now. He had promised himself that he would turn his emotions off. He couldn't be distracted right now. He had all the time in the world to mope around later, but right now, he couldn't afford to. 

He was Unbeatable JK. 

He wasn't Jungkook. Or Kook. Or Kookie. 

He was JK. The Unbeatable fighter who till date, has never lost a fight. 

"Need a hand?" He heard from the door. 

"Didn't hear you come in." Jungkook replied, wrapping his right hand. 

Yoongi closed the door behind him and walked up to Jungkook, taking the bandage from his hand. 

"I could stop you , you know." Yoongi said, "From fighting." 

"I would still fight." 

"You would go against me?" Yoongi said. 

"Tonight isn't about you or me." Jungkook told him, "It's bigger than the both of us. I mean, look at all those people out there, Yoongi. They aren't bothered about what's going on in my personal life. They're relying on me to save the gang! They need Unbeatable JK, not Jungkook, not anyone else." 

"And what about you?" 

"What about me? I'm fine!" 

"Are you, Kook?" Yoongi asked, hand frozen in the spot, "Because if you aren't-" 

"Stop." Jungkook said, cutting him off, "I'm fine." 

Yoongi finished wrapping his hand in silence, taping it in place. 

"You still love him, don't you?" 

"Who said I loved him in the first place?" Jungkook scoffed, looking down at his feet, "I was never made for love, Yoongi, you know that." 

"You were fifteen when you first came to my doorstep," Yoongi said, looking at Jungkook, "I still remember the first time I saw you. Your skin was littered with bruises, your grey shirt was filthy and it was torn and tattered, that I thought that it was more rips that it was fabric." 

Jungkook looked up at him, eyes wide with shock. In all the years that he had known Yoongi, never once did he talk about this. He didn't talk about his feelings. He always showed them through action, but sitting here now, with everything that's happened, and all of this pressure that's on him...Somehow Yoongi just knows what he needs to hear. 

"You looked at me with these big, doe brown eyes. God, Jungkook, I had never seen eyes so innocent, and sad. It was like you had been forced to grow up so fast, with the weight of the world on your shoulders, and yet, somehow, none of that corrupted you. All I wanted was to find the person who hurt you, and I hurt them back tenfold. But that wasn't my place." Yoongi said, "The one thing I knew I had to do was protect you. So I asked you if you wanted to learn self defence, and without even thinking, you said yes." 

"Why are you telling me this?" Jungkook asked him. 

"Because I made a promise to protect you," Yoongi said, "And I never break my promises." 

"I can fight now, Yoongi. You've seen me fight-" 

"I didn't just mean protect you physically Jungkook," Yoongi said, pointing at his chest, "Your heart is what needs protecting right now." 

"I'm fine." 

"You're hurt." 

"I can deal with-" 

Yoongi pulled him into a hug, tight and warm, as if locking his arms around Jungkook would cocoon him from the outside world while also gluing all of his broken, shattered pieces back together. He loved him like a little brother. And although he may not say it very often, Jungkook was one of the most important people in his life. And he would be damned before he let anyone hurt him. 

Jungkook tried to blink back tears. He couldn't cry. Not now. Not ever. He wasn't a crier. He was strong. He always had to be strong. First for his mother, than for Yoongi, then for Jin, and Hoseok, and Jimin, and...and himself. He had to be strong for himself. 

"Whatever happens out there tonight," Yoongi said in a voice barely over a whisper, hugging Jungkook tighter, "I need you to know that we're proud of you. All of us are. And that we love you, Kook. We're a family. And we always will be." 

There were three knocks to the door. Both of them quickly pulled away. 

Jungkook sniffled looking down at his feet and Yoongi went to open the door. 

"They're ready for you." The voice said. 

Yoongi closed the door and looked at Jungkook. 

"Ready, kid?"

Jungkook nodded once, stretching one last time before walking out into the pier filled with cheers. 

This was the biggest night of his life. This could make or break everything. 

 

1 minute Until The Fight.

Chapter Text

Jimin fidgeted around nervously, anxiously, checking his watch every two seconds, and looking around the crowded pier the next.

"Where is he, Tae?!" Jimin said, looking around the crowd again, trying to spot the familiar face. 

"He'll be here." Taehyung said, a supportive and understanding hand on Jimin's shoulder. 

"The fight's going to start any minute now and Namjoon still isn't here!" Jimin grumbled, "Where could he be?! When he said to meet him here I thought that he would already be here, waiting for us! Not the other way around." 

"Give him a minute, Jiminie," Taehyung said, unconvinced of his own words, "He'll be here. He wouldn't miss something like this. He knows how much this means to you. To us."

Jimin sighed. He couldn't help it. He was anxious...

Truth be told, he was feeling a lot of emotions right now - Regret, Heartbreak, Sadness, Anxiety; just to name a few. But right now, he couldn't focus on himself. This wasn't his day. 

He looked around the Pier and could see many, many men surrounding the area, almost like bodyguards. He couldn't tell the Kim Clan apart from the Hwan Clan and that only added fuel to his anxiety fire. He was seated far back, next to Taehyung. Far enough that he blended in with the crowd, but close enough to be able to see the fight. 

"Minnie, I think that's him!" Taehyung said, and Jimin's head snapped up and looked at the direction that Taehyung was pointing. 

Namjoon looked around, trying to spot his friends, looking frazzled, running his hands through his hair, worried expression on his face. 

Taehyung didn't want to call out his name, for fear of bringing attention to himself, even though the Pier was bustling with conversation and excitement. He waved his hands wildly around, trying to grab his attention. 

"I think he saw us." Jimin said, eyes still scanning the area, just in case. He couldn't help but be antsy and on edge. 

"Is...Is he okay?" Taehyung asked, eyebrows furrowing in confusion and worry as Namjoon got closer and closer to them. 

"Namjoon, where the hell have you bee-" Jimin started to say, raising his voice, but stopped after seeing the look on his face, "What's wrong?" 

"I found it..." Namjoon said, "I found out who was embezzling the money."

"What?" Taehyung said, almost jumping out of his seat, "Who is it?" 

Just as Namjoon was going to answer, a roar burst out through the crowd. The three of them snapped their heads to the centre of the Pier, where the fighter from the Hwan Clan was walking out through the entrance from the right. 

"I don't have time to explain," Namjoon said quickly, "We need to find Jin before it's too late." 

Taehyung shot out of his chair, ready to go. 

Jimin got up as well, "I'm coming." 

Taehyung caught his wrist, turning around, "No." 

"What? Why not? I'm just as much part of this gang as you are righ-" Jimin started to argue, getting angry but Taehyung stopped him with a soft look in his eyes. 

"He needs you right now." Was all Taehyung said as he glanced to the ring. 

Jimin turned to look at where Taehyung was. And that's when he saw it. Him. 

Jimin has seen every side of Jungkook that he had.

He's seen him when he was happy, and how his eyes would crinkle by it's side, nose scrunched up and mouth curved upwards into a grin. He's seen him when he was sad, and how his once honey, doe brown eyes, glazed over with glossy unshed tears that he would never admit to having. He's seen him angry, so angry that he wasn't himself anymore. So angry that a darkness within him that Jimin wasn't even sure that Jungkook knew he had, would possess him, turning his eyes black, mouth in a straight line and jaw tight, and taut. He's seen virtually every side of Jungkook, but never once, has he seen Jungkook so void of emotion the way that he was right now. 

The person he was looking at wasn't his Jungkook. It looked like him, but there was no way that it was the Jungkook that he knew. From where Jimin was standing, all he could see was a robot. Someone going through the motions of life, but who wasn't present in the slightest. His eyes were blank; empty. It held no emotion, barely any colour, and no soul. 

Jimin did this. He was responsible. 

"Whether or not he admits it," Taehyung said, bringing him back from his reverie, "He needs you now more than ever." 

"Tae, come on, we're running out of time." Namjoon said, pulling Taehyung slightly. 

"He still loves you." Taehyung reminded him, as he let go of Jimin's hand. 

Jimin sat back down, eyes never leaving Jungkook. 

"Come on, Kookie." He whispered, as if there was no one in the Pier except the both of them. 

 

~~~

 

"Jin." 

"Jaehwan." He replied in the same tone, crossing his arms over his chest, standing tall. 

"Was the referee necessary?" Jaehwan nearly scoffed, standing next to him, looking up at the two fighters who had just entered the ring. 

"Yes." Was all Jin answered. 

"Don't you trust me, Jin?" Jaehwan said, almost cynically, like he was making a joke. 

Jin didn't answer him. 

"Who's the ref anyway?" He asked. 

"A professional. He's neither my guy, nor is he yours." Jin said, finally looking at him, "This way neither of us can dispute the results." 

"Wow, you really don't trust me, do you, Kim?" 

"Have you given me a reason to?" 

Jaehwan smirked, "I guess we learn something new everyday. I learnt that you don't trust me, and you learnt that you shouldn't trust easily." 

Jin balled his fists up, letting out a deep breath as he continued to ignore Jaehwan. 

"Well, then again, good friends always teach other things," Jaehwan continued to taunt, "You're welcome, by the way." 

He couldn't help but smile at how hard Jin was holding back. His jaw was taut. eyes narrowed and hands were so obviously balled up in anger. But he couldn't help it. Jin was just so easy to rile up. He thrived off the strife and inner torment that he was causing. It was almost addictive, the way that Jin tried to hold his anger back. The power that Jaehwan was leaching off just kept him going. 

"I wonder if your little precious fighter in the ring ever learnt not to trust anyone," Jaehwan tutted, "Well, I guess I just had to be the one to teach him since none of you would."

"Unless you want me to personally drag your ass in the ring and beat the shit out of you, I suggest you shut the fuck up and watch the fight." 

"Now, now, Jin, do I have to teach you a lesson in anger management as well?" Jaehwan said, sinister smirk on his face, "I thought that my little care package to your gym would have been enough for you." 

"Did you put him up to this?" Jin asked, turning to face him, raising his voice. 

"Why, whoever do you mean?" 

"Jimin. Taehyung...." Jin said, swallowing harshly before he continued, "And Namjoon. Did you put them up to this?" 

"I wish I could take credit for them," Jaehwan said, "But no. I didn't. Although, seeing as how they've done a wonderful job, maybe, I'll consider hiring them for my new clan. Who knows, maybe Namjoon could be the rightful heir of the Kim Clan." 

Jin inhaled sharply, not wanting him to see just how much his words affected him. But he couldn't help it. Somehow, Jaehwan just knew all the right buttons to push. He had to trust Namjoon, though. But he didn't know if he could anymore. 

Could he ever learn to trust someone again? 

No. He couldn't think about right now. None of this was important. The only thing that was important was the fight. 

"Come on, Kook." Jin muttered under his breath, a heavy weight settling down on his chest, growing heavier and heavier with each tension filled passing second.

 

~~~

 

Jungkook stood in the ring, not daring to look anywhere else except for at the opponent opposite him. 

He didn't want to look in the stands. He was afraid, and there was no way he was willing to admit this to anyone, let alone himself. But, he didn't know what he was more afraid of - Finding Jimin in the stands, or not finding him in the stands. If he looked up, and around, and found the familiar pink haired boy, then he would know that Jimin really did love him, and that scared him. Because how can someone you love betray you so knowingly, and willingly. How can someone you love look you in the eye, utter those 3 magical words, kiss you softly, gently, tell you that you're worth more happiness in the world than there are stars in the universe, tell you that they will be there for you through thick and thin and everything in between, and still know in the back of their mind that after they spend the day with you, that they will go home and write all about it for the world to see. That they will expose every single secret that you told them in the dark all while trusting that they will hold it to their heart and never say a word. 

But if he didn't find Jimin in the stands...Then Jungkook would know that none of it was real. None of the kisses, or the stolen glances, or the private smiles that they reserved only for the both of them was real. That none of the promises the made, and the nights they spent together, or the fact that Jungkook actually started to believe that he was worth happiness, love, and touches that didn't bruise...That none of that was real. And that's what he was afraid of. 

He didn't know which one he feared more. 

Right now he couldn't think about it. He wouldn't allow himself to. This wasn't Jungkook. The person standing in this ring right now wasn't Jungkook. He was JK. The Unbeatable JK.

This fight wasn't just about keeping his title. It was about keeping his home. His family. His safe haven. His identity. 

Everything was on the line. 

"Okay boys," The referee said, standing in between them, "Normal underground fight rules apply. This match is a best out of 3. First one to win 2 rounds wins the match." 

He looked between the both of them and then said, "Good luck." 

They waited for the bell to signal that the match had begun. 

Jungkook took a deep breath, releasing it slowly. 

Focus. Focus. Come on, Jungkook, focus. You can do it, Kookie. I believe in you.

He couldn't think about anything else right now. He couldn't let himself be distracted. He wouldn't let anything distract him. Not even the fact that his inside voice sounded like Jimin right now. Not even if that voice was the only thing grounding him. 

Ding Ding Ding. 

The bell sounded. 

The match had begun. 

Jungkook bounced on his feet, keeping his eye trained on his opponent. He's been through fights before, but never one like this. In those fights, he was poised, confident, ready to kill on the spot if need be. But now...Well, now he was barely focused. He was far from confident, and if he was being honest, he was nervous. So nervous that he could feel it in his bones.

He was waiting for his opponent to strike first. He danced around the ring, trying to drown out the crowd, trying to focus solely on his opponent who was doing the same thing. The burly, scarred man drank the sight of Jungkook in, smirking as if he could smell his fear from where he was standing. Jungkook couldn't let his guard down.

The man swung his right fist at Jungkook, who ducked and managed to dodge it. He moved on his feet, constantly bouncing, never stopping, not even for a second. The man swung again, harder, faster. Jungkook dodged it, using this opportunity to swing his own fist, as hard as he could, knuckle first into the man's hip, pushing him back with a loud grunt. Jungkook stood straighter, eyes trained only on the man. 

Jungkook's punch seemed to have fuelled a fire in his eyes. The man gritted his teeth, taking one step, and then another, and another and before Jungkook knew it, fists were being pummelled in his direction. Jungkook fell on the ring floor, bringing his arms up to shield his face in an attempt to block as many punches as he could. But he could feel it. He felt the power of the burly man's fists on his bare skin, the punches stinging, one after another, sure to leave a bruise. He grunted, and groaned with each hit that he received.

In a normal fight, the man would have been pulled off of him. But this wasn't a normal fight. It was the furthest thing from it. This was an underground fight. No holds barred. Barely any rules. 

Jungkook kicked the man with all his might, watching as the man stumbled on his feet and then fall down with a thud. He used this time to stand up, shakily, breaths coming out in pants. He stalked over to the man, fire in his eyes as he landed a punch on his jaw. He bent down and started pummelling his fists the same way the man did to him. An eye for an eye. A punch for a punch. The man attempted to block the punches, but Jungkook wouldn't let his arms go up. He felt his fist hit the bone in the jaw, and the taut skin on his chest. Jungkook was landing punches anywhere he could. He stood up, giving the man a fair chance to fight. 

"Get up and fight, asshole." Jungkook punctuated. 

The man stood up, blood drawling down his mouth. He growled at Jungkook, keeping eye contact as he spat out the salivary blood in his mouth. 

Jungkook motioned with his hand for the man to attack him. And he did. He ran at Jungkook, fists ready to swing. Jungkook dodged to the right. He punched as hard as he could, aiming for the man's hip. The man grunted and stumbled back. Jungkook took this opportunity and punched his jaw at the same place that he did just now. The man stumbled back and hit the floor with a thud. 

Jungkook watched as the referee started to count. 

He hoped with all his might that the man would stay down. He didn't want to fight anymore. He didn't have the energy to. 

"Five. Six." The referee counted. 

Jungkook held his breath. Seconds seemed to be dragging out, feeling more like hours at this point. 

"Nine." The referee said, and suddenly the bell started dinging, "Ten!" 

Jungkook let out a sigh of relief. 

"The first round is over! Kim Clan wins one point!" 

Jungkook dragged himself to the end of the ring where Yoongi was waiting for him with a bottle of water, an energy drink and a stool to sit on. 

"You okay, kid?" Yoongi asked, passing him the water, which Jungkook took graciously. He unscrewed the cap and started gulping down the cool liquid. 

Yoongi got a towel and started to wipe the sweat and drying blood off Jungkook. 

"You seem distracted." 

"I'm not." Jungkook lied. 

"Kook-" 

"I'm fine!" Jungkook insisted. 

"Jungkook, it's okay to-" 

"I won the first round, didn't I!" Jungkook nearly screamed. 

Yoongi sighed, "Yeah kid, you did." 

"I'm fine." Jungkook said again, unsure if he was trying to convince himself or Yoongi at this point. 

"Do you want to know?" Yoongi asked. 

"Know what?" 

"If he's here or not." 

"No." Jungkook said, turning away from Yoongi, "I don't give a fuck." 

"You never were a good liar," Yoongi said. 

"I have a match to win." Jungkook told him, "And you're more concerned about some fuckbuddy I used to have?" 

"He never was a fuck buddy to you and you know that." 

"He's not important." Jungkook said, dismissing the conversation, not wanting to talk about it anymore, "This right here is more important." 

Yoongi sighed, "Okay, Kook." 

"What do I have to do?" Jungkook asked. 

"Focus." Was all Yoongi said. 

The bell rang once, signalling the end of the break. 

"Round two." The referee said, waiting for both the men to stand in the ring, ready to go. 

Ding Ding Ding

Jungkook barely had time to blink before he felt a sharp pain in his jaw. Another punch was delivered to his chest, and then his hip and the next thing Jungkook knew, he was on the floor of the ring. He curled up in a foetal position, doubling over in pain. He could feel the blood trickling down his forehead, dropping onto the white wing. He felt a kick delivered to his back and grunted and groaned in pain from the sheer force behind it. Jungkook couldn't hear anything other than the rushing of blood to his ears and he couldn't feel anything except the pain shooting up from almost every inch of his skin. 

He could faintly hear counting coming from one side of his ear, but he couldn't do anything. All he could do was try and breathe, and hope that the pain would fade away.

Ding Ding Ding 

The next thing Jungkook knew, he was being dragged to one side of the ring. 

"Kook! Kook! Jungkook!" He heard. 

Jungkook only grunted in pain. 

"Come on, Jungkook! Answer me, kid!" 

"I-I'm f-Fine." Jungkook stuttered, attempting to sit up, the adrenaline finally kicking in, almost numbing the pain that he felt, but only enough for him to sit up and slump against the post of the ring.

They said nothing as Yoongi cleaned Jungkook up. They said nothing as Jungkook downed the water, the fire only burning in his eyes. They said nothing when Yoongi sat in front of Jungkook, a worried and far away look in his eyes. 

"Say what you want to say." Jungkook said, "You don't have much time." 

70 seconds. That's all they had left before the third round. 

"This is the last round." Yoongi said. 

"I know." 

"You won the first round. He won the second." Yoongi said. 

"I know." 

"Whatever happens-" Yoongi tried to say. 

"Don't waste your breath on that," Jungkook told him, "Tell me what I need to do." 

"Fuck defending, Kook!" Yoongi said, "Attack! With everything you have! Don't hold back! Forget everything I taught you about defending and just go for it! No holds barred!" 

Jungkook nodded. He glanced over at the man on the opposite corner of the ring, smirking as if he knew something that Jungkook didn't. 

The referee signalled them over. 

Jungkook stood up, ready to go, but Yoongi grabbed his wrist and held him back.

"I'm proud of you, Kook." Yoongi said, "Win or lose, I don't give a fuck. I love you either way, and I'm proud of you." 

Jungkook's breath hitched in his throat. In all the years that he has known Yoongi, never once did Yoongi say that he loved him. Jungkook always knew that he had, but neither one of them had ever said the words out loud, always choosing to show it through the little actions that they did. Jungkook showed it through the way he respected Yoongi, and how he would never keep anything from him, or how he would never disrespect or disobey Yoongi. And Yoongi showed it through the way he cared for the younger boy, treating him like family since day one. He protected Jungkook from harm, always shielding him from the world as much as possible. He taught him self defence, wanting the younger boy to be able to protect himself. He clothed him, fed him, but most importantly, he loved him like a little brother. 

"I'll always be rooting for you." Yoongi said as he let his wrist go with a warm smile. 

Jungkook nodded, too overwhelmed to say anything. But he knew that Yoongi knew exactly what he wanted to say. 

"Chickening out already, JK?" The man smirked at him, dried blood on his cut lip. 

Jungkook scoffed, standing opposite him, mouth upturned in a cocky smirk, "Against someone as shit as you? This is child's play." 

"Wasn't child's play when I knocked you out in less than a minute in the last round now, was it?" He taunted, "Why do they call you Unbeatable again?" 

"Maybe because I beat the fuc-" Jungkook snarled but was cut off by the referee. 

"Play nice, boys." The referee said.

Jungkook couldn't help but scoff at the irony. Here both of them were, bleeding because of each other's fists and the referee wanted them to 'play nice'. 

"Last round." The referee said, looking at both of them before sounding the bell, "Winner takes all. Good luck." 

Ding Ding Ding

 

Jimin was on the edge of his seat, fingers by his side, digging into his seat, eyes trained on Jungkook as he muttered silent prayers to a God that he didn't even know existed. 

He watched as Jungkook bounced on his heels, circling the ring, fire burning in his eyes at whatever the man said to him before the bell rang. He noticed how Jungkook didn't look anywhere else other than his opponent and for a second wondered if that was deliberate or not. 

Jimin could have sworn that if he blinked, he would have missed it. He would have missed the way the man lunged at Jungkook, knocking him off balance. The man took the split second that Jungkook was taken aback to swing his fist as hard as he could into his jaw. Even with Jimin as far back as he was, he could hear the grunt of pain that escaped Jungkook. 

Jimin shot out of his seat amongst the cheers from the Pier, screaming for bloodlust. He couldn't help the fact that tears sprang in his eyes. Watching the love of his life get hurt right in front of him and not being able to do anything about it was the worst punishment imaginable. 

"Please, Kook," Jimin muttered under his breath. 

The man swung again, and again, and again. 

All Jimin could see was Jungkook's blood on his skin, flowing down onto the white ring; Jungkook's blood on the white bandages of the man's hand as he swung his fists mercilessly, attacking Jungkook again and again. 

Jungkook managed to push him off, kicking him with as much force as he could muster. Cheers rang through the Pier as Jungkook stumbled shakily, forcing himself to stand up amidst the pain. He brought his hand to his face, feeling warm, wet liquid. Blood. His blood. He turned his head to the side and spat out the metallic tasting liquid, tainting the already bloodstained ring more. 

The man smirked at him, lunging again. Jungkook was ready this time. He dodged the hit and used his elbow to hit the man as hard as he could. Jimin almost felt a sigh of relief come through. He's watched Jungkook do this move in almost every fight, and won with it. Jungkook always considered this his finishing move. 

"Namjoon, come on! Stop getting distracted!" Taehyung said, pulling Namjoon, to get his focus off the match and onto finding Jin. They didn't have much time left. 

"I can't see him!" Namjoon complained. 

"He's definitely not in the ring, I'll tell you that." Taehyung muttered, rolling his eyes, weaving his way in and out of the crowd, eyes scanning the faces in an attempt to find Jin.

"He's doing well." Namjoon said, glancing over at the ring again to see Jungkook's fist collide with the man's hip. 

"Jimin would be relieved." Taehyung said. 

"So would everyone else." 

"There he is!" Taehyung said, pointing over at the far side of the Pier where Jin was standing, eyes firmly on the match, wearing a poker face. 

"He's worried." Namjoon said with a small sigh. 

"He seems fine to me." 

"I can read him better than anyone," Namjoon said with a sad smile, "He's trying to remain neutral." 

"How can you tell that he's not okay?" 

"His eyes." Namjoon answered, "If you can read and understand his eyes, you would know what a terrible liar he really is." 

Taehyung stopped mid-walk, "I can go by myself if it's too...painful.." 

Namjoon shook his head, "This isn't about me, or him, or even our relationship. This about his family - The gang. It's bigger than us. One conversation won't kill us."

"Will he hear us out?" Taehyung asked, worried. 

"If it's about his family, he would." 

"Last chance, Joon." Taehyung warned. 

Namjoon smiled, taking the file with the evidence from Taehyung's hand as he walked up to Jin. 

"Jin." Namjoon called out. 

Jin reluctantly tore his eyes away from the match. His eyes grew wide, a mixture of emotions running through them. Namjoon spotted every single one - Surprise, happiness, sadness, betrayal, hurt...Conflicted. Neutral. 

"What are you doing here?" Jin asked, "How could you show you face again after everything that you did?" 

"Look Jin, just hear us out-" 

"Leave." He demanded, "Before I throw you out myself." 

"This isn't about us! It's about the gang!" Taehyung interjected.

"Haven't you done enough 'for the gang'?!" Jin almost shouted, wanting his words to drip with venom, instead it came out hurt..."Leave us the fuck alone!" 

"Do you really believe I could do that to you?" Namjoon asked, eyes shining with hurt, "After everything that we said to each other, after every promise that we made, every night that we spent together, every time you came home at 4 in the morning....Do you really believe that I could hurt you like that?" 

"If you asked me this two days ago, my answer would be no, I don't." Was all Jin said. 

"Don't you trust me?" Namjoon asked him, eyes glossy. 

"Put yourself in my shoes, Jooni- Namjoon." Jin corrected quickly, "After what happened yesterday, how would you answer that question?" 

Namjoon looked at Jin, hurt in his eyes, unsaid words being spoken with just a single glance between them. He clutched the file tighter in his grip, almost crumpling it.

"Namjoon. The paper." Taehyung said, loud enough through the cheers for only Namjoon to hear. 

"Maybe you trust me, or maybe you don't," Namjoon told him, "But everything I said, every single thing, was true. Every kiss, every promise, every touch in the dark and every confession of love." 

Jin couldn't hear anymore, "Why are you here, Namjoon?" 

"Because of this." Namjoon said, thrusting the file into Jin's hands, "We found him. We found the person embezzling the money." 

"Embezzling money?" Jin asked, eyebrows furrowed in confusion, "What are you talking about?" 

"When you gave us the accounts to look over, we noticed that some of the accounts weren't balancing up. We looked it over and it turns out that someone has been taking money away from the gang." Taehyung explained, "It started off as petty theft with ten dollars a month, but it kept building and building and building."

"How much did they take?" Jin asked, flipping through the file. 

"Hundreds of thousands." Namjoon said, "The exact figure is on page 3. It's highlighted in pink." 

Jin turned the page, eyes skimming the paper, ignoring the cheers of the crowd. 

"Is it Jaehwan?" Was his first question. 

"No." Taehyung answered. 

"Who is it?" He asked, looking up from the file. 

"It's-" Namjoon started to answer but was cut off by a scream. 

"Jungkook!

The three of them snapped their heads around to look at the ring. 

Everything moved in slow-motion. From the way the man narrowly avoided Jungkook's fist, to the way he turned to reverse the move onto Jungkook instead. He elbowed Jungkook in the nose, making him stumble back and instinctively grab his nose, groaning in pain. He used this split second to punch Jungkook once, twice and a third time, pushing all of his weight and tripling the punch in strength. Jungkook doubled over in pain, clutching his stomach. The man elbowed Jungkook on the back, making him fall on the floor of the ring. 

The referee started to count.

"No." Jin said in a voice barely over a whisper as he watched Jungkook bleed out in the ring, struggling to stand up. 

The referee kept counting. 

"Get up, Kook!" He heard Yoongi yell. 

"Fuck, Jungkook, please, get up," Jin said under his breath, eyes wide, mouth agape. 

The referee kept counting. 

"Kookie..." Jimin said, already pushing past the crowd to get closer to the ring, eyes never leaving Jungkook's body on the floor as he watched him squirm in pain, eyes glossy with tears as he tried to fight it. 

The referee kept counting. 

Jungkook could faintly hear the cheers of the crowd, the referee's soft voice that seemed far away, Yoongi yelling something at him. But all he could feel was pain radiating from every inch of his body. He could feel the sensation of blood dripping down his forehead, down his leg, down his arm, down his face. And at this point, he didn't know if the blood was his or not. 

The referee kept counting. 

"If you know what's good for you, you'd stay the fuck down." The man spat at Jungkook, looking down at him with disgust. 

"Ten." 

Ding Ding Ding

"H-He...." Jin said, unable to complete the sentence. 

"Lost." Namjoon finished, "Jungkook lost."

The Unbeatable JK was finally beaten. 

Jaehwan won. 

Jin just lost everything. 

 

 

 

They lost.

Chapter Text

The only sound that could be heard in the gym encapsulated and shrouded in silence, was the occasional hiss of pain that came out of Jungkook. Yoongi was standing over him, dabbing the cuts, bruises and blood off him. 

There was nothing to say. Nothing that could be said. 

Every empire falls. 

Only this time, it was Jin's empire, that his father built from ground up, died over and passed to him, that fell. 

Jin couldn't help but feel responsible for the loss. The money, the drugs, none of that was important. The bonds that are formed, the fact that the people in this gang become more like family than actual family...Jin let himself lose all of that. This was all his fault. If he didn't get swayed by his ego, pride and Jaehwan, he would still have everything. He would still have his family. All he had now was...Well nothing. He had nothing left but the clothes on his back and the shoes on his feet. 

"Hold still," Yoongi muttered to Jungkook who kept moving back with every dab of the cotton that was soaked in disinfectant. 

He raised him. Yoongi raised Jungkook like his own son, like his own brother, and now here he was, wiping blood of off him. At this point he didn't know if the blood was even Jungkook's or if it was the man that he fought. He should have stopped him. This wouldn't be happening if Yoongi had just stopped him. He didn't care that they lost. He really didn't. He cared more about the broken boy in front of him. Broken in spirit, broken deep in his heart, broken in his soul....Broken. Yoongi could have stopped all of this. But he didn't. This was his fault. All of the cuts, bruises, blood...All of it was his fault. 

Hoseok leaned against the wall, watching everyone beat themselves up in the dark, damp, cold gym. All the light had been long wiped out, replaced with gloom and darkness once again, as if there was never any sunshine and smiles to begin with. He should have done something when everything was going to shit. But he couldn't. He wasn't in the venue. He had his own duties to carry out, and still, he felt like he should have done something. Maybe if he did, he would still have a place to call home. Home....Since he was younger, he never had one. He couldn't help but let a scoff escape his lips. He was so dumb for thinking that he finally had one to begin with. Hoseok was, is, and will always be a nomad; running from one thing to another. 

I deserve this. I deserve the pain. I shouldn't be complaining. This is my fault. All my fault. I deserve this. I deserve the pain. I shouldn't be complaining. This is my fault. All my fault. I dese-

Those were the only thoughts running through Jungkook's head. With every sting of the cotton, every sharp pain that radiated through his body with the smallest move, every time that he hissed out in pain, he kept reminding himself that this was his punishment. This was his fault. The solemn mood in the gym, the sad expressions on everyone's faces, the dark thoughts that loomed around; all of it was because of him. He used to be unbeatable. Used to carry out that title like a pride of honour, and now, all it was to him was a badge of shame. He was just a shell of the man he used to be. Two days ago, his life was different. He was happy. He was on top of the moon, in love, with the most important people surrounding him. And now, all of that seemed like a far away dream, as if it never really happened. So, here he sat, in a place that he barely recognised, just a shell of the human that he used to be, broken in spirit, soul and as much as he didn't want to admit, heart. He deserved it. He was never meant to be happy. This right here, right now, in pain, broken, was all that he was meant for. 

 

~~~

 

"Jimin, you don't even know if they'll be there!" Taehyung said, running after a determined Jimin. 

"I've got to try." Jimin said, fire in his eyes as he kept walking in front of his two friends. 

"What are you going to do if they're there?" Namjoon asked, jogging behind them to catch up.

"Be there for them." Was all Jimin said, eyes narrowed, only one thought in his mind - Jungkook needs me.

"Jimin!" Taehyung called out, struggling to keep up.

Jimin ignored him, and kept walking. 

"Goddamnit Jimin," Taehyung said, grabbing his wrist and pulling him to stop, "Stop it!" 

"Let me go." 

"Stop, Jimin!" Taehyung repeated, voice getting louder, "What do you think you're going to do, huh?! You're going to get there, not even knowing if they're in the gym or not, and then what?! What are you going to do? What are you going to say?! Do you really think you're the person they want to see right now? Do you really think that after breaking Jungkook's heart and all of their trust that you're  the one they want comfort from right now?!" 

"Tae, stop-" Namjoon started to say, hand on Taehyung's shoulder. 

"No, Joon!" Taehyung said, pulling his shoulder away from his touch, "This needs to be said. I'm done babying him!"

Jimin stood there, wrist still in Taehyung's grip, taking the abuse. 

"What do you think you're going to do, Jimin? What are you going to say? What if they're not there? What if-" 

"I don't know!" Jimin shouted, snatching his wrist from Taehyung's vice like grip, " I don't fucking know, okay! I don't know what I'm going to say. I don't know what I'm going to do, or where I'm even going to begin to look if they're not in the gym. All I know is that they've become family to me. Yes, I hurt them! Yes I know that putting what I thought I wanted over them was terrible and that I'm a shit person for it. And I know that I'm going to have to work to gain their trust back...."

Jimin spoke softer now, eyes glossing over with tears that he would never shed. Not now at least. 

"I made a promise to him, Tae," Jimin said, voice small, strained, "I promised him that I would be there through the thick, through thin and everything in between there. This is the thick. I have to go to him. I don't care if he says that he doesn't need me. I know he does. I know him better than anyone, and I know that he's beating himself up about losing....He doesn't deserve this, Tae. He deserves so much more than the unkind words he believes about himself."

Taehyung's eyes softened. He could see just how much Jimin has fallen for Jungkook. If this was about his job, he would have been long gone. He wouldn't have run to the ring. He wouldn't have screamed and shouted and protested as Jungkook was dragged of the ring, leaving a trail of dark brown blood all over the ring. He wouldn't have tried to catch him. He wouldn't have walked all this way to the gym. 

Jimin was in love. He didn't care about gang wars, or the fact that just being affiliated with Jungkook could get him killed. He didn't care about the money, or the fact that what was once his dream was slipping right through his fingers. All he cared about was the family that he had made, and the relationships that he had built on love. 

"You can either come with me, or let me go." Jimin said, voice steely, eyes determined. 

"They're my family too." Taehyung told him.

"Let's go get our family back." Namjoon said, walking to stand next to Taehyung and Jimin, smile on his face.

 

~~~

 

Nobody had said a word. They didn't know what to say. 

There were no Hallmark cards made for losing your family that happened to be a gang to your one and only rival. 

Every time each of them opened their mouth, it was quickly shut. 

So there they sat, under sim lighting, looking at each other, waiting for someone to break the silence. 

It was insane just how much their lives had changed in one night. It was so crazy to them to even think about it - How much one decision had changed their lives. 

This entire gang started with Yoongi and Jungkook in this very gym. And one day, Jin joined the picture, and another day, Hoseok. And their lives had just changed forever. They went through the good times, and the bad together. They've visited each other in hospitals, had each other's back amongst stabbings and gunshots, relied so heavily on each other for the smallest to the biggest of things, and now here they were; at the end of an era, with no plans as to what the future held. They never prepared for losing. None of them did. And in their minds, all of them thought that this was their fault.  

"What now?' Jungkook asked, voice raspy, hoarse, full of fear. 

Hoseok, Jungkook and Yoongi automatically turned to Jin who had his head hung low as he leaned against the post of the ring. They waited for him to say something. Anything. 

But he didn't. 

Yoongi hesitated, before saying, "Jin?" 

"I don't know." He answered, morosely. Lost. Jin was so, incredibly lost. He didn't have a plan. He doesn't have a plan. He doesn't have anything anymore. 

The King of the biggest, most successful- 

Wait, no. That's not right. 

He was the King. He's nothing anymore. He's no one anymore. 

He's just a disappointment. Someone who couldn't keep their gang. Someone weak. Someone who allowed himself to be pressured into a fight that he knew he couldn't win....Someone whose father would be disgusted to even look at. 

"We're going to figure this out." Yoongi said, not sure if he was trying to comfort Jin, himself, or everyone else in the room. 

Jin leaned his head back against the post, letting out a defeated breath, "I don't think we are."

"W-What?" Jungkook stammered out. Jin was always the one with the plan. He was always the one who they turned to when they reached a dead end. Jin was the one who always had a smile on his face as he took their hand and walked them out of the maze. 

Jin sighed, looking up with weary, worry filled eyes at the rest of them, heart breaking as he said, "Look, you guys...You need to leave town." 

"What?!" Hoseok said, eyes wide, as if he heard wrongly, "What are you talking about? Leave town?!" 

"You need to go." Jin told them, knowing that they would protest as soon as they heard what he was about to say, "After Jaehwan won, he wanted to, in his words, 'claim his winnings.' I told him that I needed a couple of days to sort my shit out..." 

"Jin don't-" Yoongi said, already anticipating what he was going to say. 

"If you guys leave now, you'll be far away when all hell breaks loose," Jin told them, "Leave town. Save yourselves." 

"We're not going anywhere." Jungkook said, voice steely, "We're a fucking family, goddamnit! Family doesn't leave anyone behind! If you're staying then we're sure as hell staying." 

"You don't understand what you're getting yourselves into!" Jin insisted, worry seeping into his voice, "I don't know what Jaehwan is going to do! But knowing him it's going to be a bloodbath." 

"We're not going." Yoongi said firmly, echoing Jungkook's sentiments. 

"I can't watch you guys get hurt anymore," Jin said, a cold, bitter layer of unshed tears brimmed against his eyes, "I can't-" 

"When have you known us to back down from a fight, huh, Jin?" Hoseok said, crossing the room to join the other three. 

"You got stabbed!" Jin said, pointing at Hoseok, "You are covered in bruises, blood and god knows what else! And Yoongi, you-"

"Are perfectly healthy." He finished for him. 

"I can't let you guys do anymore. You've done enough. It's my turn now." Jin told them, sniffling once as he stood up. 

Just then, the doors to the gym were pushed open. Immediately, the four boys heads snapped to the door, freezing, a million different scenarios running through their heads simultaneously. They didn't even have their weapons on them. What were they going to do if it was Jaehwan? 

"Leave." Was the first thing out of Yoongi's mouth when he saw who walked through the door. 

"No." 

"Haven't you done enough?! Why the fuck are you even here?!" Hoseok yelled, taking a step forward. 

"Because I made a promise-"

"Don't." Jungkook said immediately, "You lost the right to say those words a long time ago, Jimin." 

"Push me away tomorrow all you want," Jimin said, taking a step forward, "But not now. Please Jungkook, don't push me away now." 

"Give me one reason I shouldn't." 

"Because you need me." Jimin said. 

"I have everything I need right here." Jungkook told him. 

"I'm here too, aren't I?" 

They waited. Waited for some kind of signal that Jungkook didn't want Jimin there. Waited for him to say something. Anything. 

But he didn't. 

He just stared at Jimin with a blank expression on his face. If anyone saw them now, they wouldn't know what to think, other than, Jungkook was spacing out. But he wasn't. Jimin knew him better than that. It was all in his eyes. Everything he ever needed to know about Jungkook was in his eyes. It was, and always will be, Jimin's favourite feature on him. 

Jungkook was conflicted. He didn't want to admit it, but, there was a part of him that needed Jimin. He needed that warmth, and the reassurance that everything was going to be okay. In the ring tonight, all he wanted was to look at Jimin. Wanted him there. Wanted his strength, and his anchor. Needed him more than the want. But he didn't allow himself to look around. Didn't want to know if he was there or not. He didn't know if he could handle it. More than the physical pain he felt from the beatings today, he could still feel his heart broken. He could still feel the broken shards of the heart that he was convinced he didn't have poking every inch of skin of his chest. 

"Kook?" Yoongi prompted. 

"They can stay." Jungkook found himself saying, looking away from Jimin. 

As much as Jungkook didn't want to admit that he still loved him..He did. But he was hurt. So, so hurt. 

Jimin crossed the floor and sat down next to Jungkook, fingers aching to feel him, to hold him, to hug him and kiss him and tell him that everything was going to be okay. But he didn't. He knew that Jungkook needed space right now, that he was still hurt from everything. So he sat there, next to him, waiting for a prompt or a cue...or anything to let him know that Jungkook wanted to be touched as much as he wanted to touch him. 

The gym was silent. Not a single word was spoken. Not even the sounds of their breaths could be heard. 

Namjoon and Taehyung were still lurking around the doorway, scared to enter. They didn't fear the gang members, not one bit. They were scared that the gang members hated them and wanted nothing to do with them. 

Jimin was the first to break the silence, "Did you know that tulips were once exchanged as a form of currency." 

"What?" Hoseok said, looking up, eyebrow cocked, arms crossed over his chest. 

Jimin smiled, "The word piano means 'to be play softly.' 

"Jimin, what the fuck are you even saying?" Hoseok said, frustrated. 

Jungkook turned to look at Jimin. He was physically and mentally tired. Emotionally? He was drained. 

Yet, all Jimin did, was smile warmly at him. 

"A ducks quack never echoes!" Taehyung piped up, looking at Jimin, smiling; finally understanding what he was trying to do. 

Namjoon quickly caught on, and listed a fact off the top of his head, "You can hear a blue whale's heartbeat from more than 2 miles away."

"What the fuck are you guys even-" 

"Icebreakers." Jungkook answered, "They're giving us fun facts as ice breakers."

"Fun fact," Jimin said, trying his hardest to keep the smile on his face, heart aching, yearning, "Croissants are french for-" 

"Crescent moon. They named the pastry after the shape." Jungkook finished, and in a voice barely over a whisper, he said, "I remember." 

And just like that, all the memories came rushing back in. The time in the cafe, that time in the car after Jungkook saved Jimin from those drunk men. When he had searched hours and hours on the internet trying to picture what it would be like if he told this fact instead of that to Jimin. Would he smile? Would he laugh? Because all Jungkook ever wanted, was to see Jimin happy. It was like that time when Jimin was fighting with Taehyung, and was sad. Like that time when Jungkook was scared to fight, the title of Unbeatable weighing too heavily on his chest, and how Jimin had waltzed into the dressing room, smile on his face, confident enough for the both of them and told him a fun fact. 

They loved each other. They love each other. They never stopped. 

Yet here they were, barely 3 inches apart, unable to say what they really thought, what they really felt, and what they really wanted.

"Jungkook, I-" 

"Stop." He nearly pleaded, "You asked for tonight, so I'm giving it to you. But please, Jimin...Don't." 

"Don't what?" 

"Don't remind me why I fell in love with you," Jungkook said. 

"Do you still..." Jimin asked, not finishing his question. 

Jungkook said nothing. He just looked away from Jimin, tears stinging his eyes. 

"Guys!" Jin interrupted, "There are bigger things happening right now than our relationship problems." 

"What are you guys going to do?" Taehyung asked, "What's going to happen now?" 

"Jaehwan is going to take everything - The money, the accounts, the drugs, our clients, the gang members...Everything." 

Hoseok glanced over at Yoongi and their eyes met. Yoongi gave him a subtle nod. 

"Jin." Hoseok called out, making everyone look at him, "Yoongi and I have some money saved up that we-" 

"No." Was Jin's immediate response. 

"The money isn't the issue here, Jin," Yoongi interjected, "We have enough money saved up for the four of us to go away and -" 

"I said no, Yoongi!" Jin said, "And that's an order." 

"There's no gang to give an order to anymore, Jin," Hoseok spat out, "Desperate times call for desperate measures." 

"We're not using your money!" 

"It's not mine." Hoseok said, "It's ours." 

"Tell them." Namjoon said, looking at Jin who refused to even glance at him. 

"Stay out of it." Jin spat out, warning him. 

"Tell them or I will." 

"Tell us what?" Jungkook asked, looking around the room, able to taste the palpable tension.

Namjoon crossed the gym, standing in front of Jin, "Tell them, or I will."

"Namjoon and Taehyung came to me today, during the fight, and showed me that someone was embezzling money from the gang." Jin summarised.

"And you believed them? After everything?" Jungkook said, looking at him incredulously. 

"There was evidence, Kook." Jin told him. 

"Who is it?" Jungkook asked him, narrowing his eyes, "And what does he want?" 

"He wants the gangs. All of them." Jin said, "He wants the money, the drugs, the contacts...Everything. Hell, he even wants this gym."

"There's no fucking way I'm giving this gym to anyone! This is my home! This is our home!." Yoongi spat out, "They'll have pry this gym out of my cold, dead hands, if they want it." 

The door burst open with a gust of wind, loud, making the hinges squeak and screech in protest.

"That can be arranged." 

"What the fuck are you doing here?" Jin spat out, shooting up from where he was sitting, pulling Namjoon behind him, shielding him. He didn't have any weapons, but he would be damned before he let anyone hurt Namjoon. 

"I got bored of waiting." 

"You said I had a couple of days, Jaehwan," Jin said. 

"If I didn't honour the treaty, what the fuck makes you think I would honour my word?" Jaehwan said with a cynical laugh. 

"You never were your father's son, were you?" 

"I could say the same about you," Jaehwan told him, "Your father never lost anything..."

"You son of a bi-" Jin started to lunge but was pulled back by Namjoon.

"Aww, isn't this cute," Jaehwan said, being flanked by Kang and a few of his most trusted men, "You guys have made up..." 

"The fuck do you want?" Yoongi spat out. 

"My winnings." 

Jungkook pushed Jimin behind him, turning around slowly so that he could whisper. 

"Listen," Jungkook said softly, "Whatever happens, I want you to run. Run as fast as you can and as far as you can. Don't look back at all, okay? Just keep running. Get away from here." 

"But, Jungkook what about-" 

"No, Jimin," He said, shaking his head, "Don't worry about me, or Jin, or Hoseok or anyone, okay?! Just keep running and don't turn around." 

"If you get hurt-" 

"Promise me." Jungkook said, cutting him off. 

"No!" 

"You've broken every other promise to me, Jimin," Jungkook said, "The least you could do is promise me this." 

With teary eyes, Jimin nodded. 

"Say it." 

"I promise." Jimin said. 

Jungkook's eyes softened. He wanted nothing more than to reach out and cup Jimin's cheek, to rub the stray tear that fell from his already red rimmed eyes, to feel the warmth of his plump, soft lips against his. He wanted Jimin back. 

But right now wasn't the time to think about it. And he was reminded of the severity of the situation when he heard Jin let out a bitter and cynical laugh. 

"What's so funny, huh, Kim?" Jaehwan said, growing more and more annoyed. 

"The fact that you want to own all of this and yet you can't take care of your shitty little gang." 

"What the fuck does that mean?" Jaehwan spat out.

"It means that you have a little problem that only pest control can solve." Jin said, with a smirk. 

"Pest contr-" 

The sound of the gun firing made all of them jump from shock. All except two people - the one who shot it, and the one who dropped on the ground like a fly, lying in a pool of his own blood. 

One second Jaehwan was talking and the next, a bullet was lodged in the back of his head, making him fall down, eyes still open, mouth agape from talking as his head hit the cement floor of the gym. His blood was splattered on Jin and Namjoon's shirts, along with little meats of his brain from where the bullet had passed through at a high speed. 

"Now, why did you have to say that, Jin?" He said with a shake of his head, waving the gun around, "See what you made me do?" 

"I never did buy into your little facade," Jin replied, unfazed by the blood and gore, or even Jaehwan's body lying at his feet. He's seen this scene one too many times. Many a time, he was the one holding the gun. All of this was like second nature to him. He was completely and utterly desensitised from it. 

"He did." 

"And now he's dead." Jin said, as if it wasn't obvious. 

"You will be too if you don't give me what I want." 

"And what is that you want, Kang?" Jin asked. 

"I want it all." Kang said, "The money, drugs...everything." 

"You've already got Jaehwan's gang," Jin said, "Leave mine alone." 

"Three days." Kang told him, "You have three days to give everything to me. And I mean everything, Kim, or else you'll end up like him. Dead, like a worthless animal." 

Kang locked eyes with Namjoon, who was shaking with fear. He understood now why Jaehwan thrived off of it. It was powerful. 

"I'll start with him," Kang said, nodding at Namjoon, cocking the gun and pointing it straight at him, "And then I'll work my way around the room. I'll make you watch as they scream and beg for mercy. All while you sit there, unable to do anything but watch them cry, suffer and bleed." 

He twirled the gun and put it back in his pocket. 

Kang looked down at Jaehwan with a smile on his face, before he spat at his corpse that was still warm. Then he looked back at Jin. 

"Three days." He reminded him, "By the Pier." 

 

 

Chapter Text

As soon as the door closed behind Jungkook, he slumped against the wall, eyes closed, leaning back, exhaustion hitting him all at once. The last 48 hours have just drained him of all energy - emotional, mental and physical. He could feel the bruises bloom and slowly take form on his skin, he could feel the dried up blood on his skin, the wounds that had just formed. But worst of all, he could still feel the shards of his broken heart poke and prod the cavity in his chest where his heart used to be. 

So much has happened in such a short span of time, and Jungkook was tired. He was so, so tired. 

It wasn't the type of tired where a good night's sleep could cure. It was the kind of tired you felt deep in your bones; and he didn't know how to fix it. 

Jimin stood at the opposite wall, leaning against it as he looked at Jungkook. He had never seen him like this. All he saw was how exhausted and vulnerable he was. 

Outside that door, Jungkook was strong, unbeatable, fierce and dangerous. But here, in the comfort of his own home, away from prying eyes, Jimin saw how the facade melted away, discarded like it never existed in the first place. 

That gym, as much as it was a safe place, was always going to have prying eyes, and Jungkook had to constantly be strong, even it meant hiding how he truly felt. And Jimin, for the first time, could see just how sad that was. 

"Three days," Kang reminded, gun still hanging from his hand, smile playing on his face, "By the Pier." 

Jimin's mouth was open, eyes brimming with tears at the sight of Jaehwan lying in a pool made up of his own blood and chunks of his brain scattered all around him. How did any of them not care? How could they stand there, completely ignoring what was in front of them. There was a dead man in the room! Right in front of them! Lying at their feet and no one was doing anything! 

"Jimin. Jimin look at me." Jimin heard faintly, eyes unmoving from the gory sight in front of him. 

A warm hand cupped his cheek, pulling his face gently and all he saw were pools of honey. 

"Look at me, Jiminie. Right at me." The soft, melodic voice, pulled him out of his trance. 

His bottom lip quivered and the next thing he knew he was being pulled into a warm embrace, being moved to the bleachers with Jungkook squatting in front of him, dried up blood on his face, bruises on his jaw and cheek, and yet the only thing that Jungkook cared about was Jimin's well being. 

"I'm not going to let anything hurt you, Jimin." He said. 

"Please," Jimin said in a shaky voice. 

"What do you need?" Jungkook asked. 

"Don't let me be alone tonight. Please, Kookie, I can't-I can't be-I really-I don't want to-" 

"Hey, hey, hey," He said, wiping the tears off his cheeks, "I'm right here, Jimin. You're not alone. You'll never be alone. I'm right here." 

Jimin launched himself into Jungkook's arms, wanting nothing more than to feel love and comfort and warmth even if he knew, at the back of his mind that he didn't deserve this kindness. 

The strong facade was washed away and all Jimin could see was how Jungkook was trying to be strong for everyone else, when all he needed was someone to be strong for him too. 

Jimin was selfish. He knew he was. And he didn't want to be anymore. 

He kicked himself softly off the wall, reaching for the doorknob that was just out of reach from his fingertips, when a warm hand wrapped around his wrist. 

His head snapped down to see bruised knuckles. He looked over at Jungkook, who finally opened his eyes, and couldn't help but let out a small gasp. 

The once galaxy filled honey brown eyes that he was so used to seeing was dark, tired, red rimmed. He was so used to being able to find constellations in his eyes, and now, all he could see was pain, and darkness. 

"Stay." Jungkook barely managed to get out, voice husky, shaky, thick with unsaid emotion. 

Jimin nodded. For once, he wasn't being selfish. Jungkook was always there when he needed him. Now it was Jimin's turn to be there, and he would, for as long as it took. He wasn't going anywhere.

 

 

~~~

"What are you thinking about?" Jin asked him, fingers carding through his soft brown locks as he laid down on Jin's chest. 

"Everything." He answered. 

"Are you scared?" 

"Not of you." Namjoon said, "Never of you." 

"I'm sorry I didn't protect you," Jin told him, softly. 

"You literally jumped in front of a gun for me, Jin," Namjoon said, looking up at him, "If that isn't protecting me, I don't know what is." 

"He would be a dead man if he even tried to hurt you," Jin snarled, anger flashing in his eyes.

Namjoon kept quiet, not wanting to relive what happened tonight. But he couldn't help himself. All that kept replaying in his mind was what unfolded.

 

"Three days," Kang reminded, gun still hanging from his hand, smile playing on his face, "By the Pier." 

J in stood, unwavering, a snarl on his lips as he watched Kang and his posse file out of the gym. He waited until the doors were closed before spinning around and taking Namjoon in his arms. 

He could feel him shaking like a leaf, warm, wet tears falling in the crook of his neck. 

"Shh, baby, shh," Jin whispered into Namjoon's hair, hugging him tight, turning them around so that Namjoon couldn't see the blood, the pieces of meat, the bullet and the dead body, 

"You're okay, Joonie. I'm right here, baby. No one's going to hurt you. I'm right here. You're okay." Jin kept whispering reassurances to him, wishing that he had the power to erase Namjoon's memory. 

Jin was desensitised to all of the violence. He was numb. None of this meant anything to him. Hell, he was the one who pulled the trigger most of the time, how could one gunshot in front of him make any difference? 

But Namjoon...Namjoon wasn't used to seeing so much blood and gore. He wasn't used to seeing this side of Jin either. 

This was all Jin's fault. He shouldn't have brought him into this world. Now Namjoon had to live with that memory all of his life. 

"Ji-Jin he just-" Namjoon tried to say through his tears, but the words weren't coming out. 

"I know. I know," Was all Jin could say as he hugged him tighter, stroking his hair, the other hand on his back, rubbing circles into it. 

"I do- JIn I don'-" 

"Shh, Namjoon, Shhh baby," Jin comforted softly into his hair, "You're alright. I got you. I got you, Joon." 

And in a quiet voice, he whispered, "I'm never letting you go again." 

He didn't know how long he held Namjoon as he sobbed into Jin, tears wetting his neck and shirt, but Jin didn't care. He held him until he felt the sobs die down. He stroked Namjoon's back, whispering words of reassurance, hugging him, making sure that he knew that no one would ever harm him as long as Jin had anything to say about it. 

Namjoon pulled away, wiping his face with his sleeves, eyes bloodshot as he looked at Jin, bottom lip quivering again. 

"No one," Jin said, thumb on Namjoon's cheek as he wiped the stray tear away with a comforting smile, "Is ever going to hurt you. Understand? I'm going to protect you with my life, Joonie." 

"And that's exactly what I'm afraid of." Namjoon told him, voice shaky as he took a deep breath, "I don't want to be the reason for you getting hurt." 

"You're not a weakness, Namjoon," He said, "You're the only thing keeping me going." 

"Jin." Yoongi said, pulling his attention to him, "Now what?" 

"We're not in the right headspace to make any decisions," Jin told them, "Let's get some rest and meet back here tomorrow." 

Yoongi nodded, exhaustion hitting him too. 

"Yoongs." Jin called out. 

"Yeah?" 

"Do you still have the number of the guy to clean this up?" Jin said, nodding to the body on the floor, a disgusted expression crossing his face.

"I'll give him a call." Yoongi said, taking his phone out of his pocket and bringing it up to his ear.

Jin turned back to Namjoon, affection and adoration in his eyes, "Let's go home."

 

Namjoon couldn't stop thinking about how Jin stepped in front of a gun for him.

It was reckless.
It was stupid! 
It was quite possibly the dumbest thing that Jin did! 
It made him so angry! 

It was scary...

The entire time that Kang was in the gym, Namjoon couldn't help but pray. He found himself praying to every God that ever existed even though Namjoon was an atheist. He prayed and prayed that no harm would come to Jin and his friends. He didn't care about himself, he just cared that everyone else was safe. And when that gun was pointed at him, Namjoon couldn't lie, his first thought wasn't about himself...It was about how if he were to be killed right then and there, at least everyone else he loved would be safe. At least he would die knowing that his friends were safe and sound. 

"You're thinking really loudly," Jin commented, worried about what was going through Namjoon's head. 

Namjoon sat up, and looked at Jin who had propped himself on his elbows. 

"What's wrong?' Jin asked. 

"I need you to promise me something." Namjoon almost demanded. 

"What is it?" 

"Promise me." 

"I can't promise you something without knowing what it is, love," Jin said with an amused smile. 

"Promise me that if something like tonight happens again, you won't do something stupid like jump in front of a gun for me." Namjoon said. 

Jin said nothing. 

"Jin! Promise me!" 

"I can't make a promise when I know that I'm going to break it." Jin told him calmly.

Namjoon deflated. What else could he do? What could he do or say to make Jin live?! He didn't want him to get hurt. He never wants to be the cause of that. He doesn't want to even imagine a time or place where Jin ends up like Jaehwan did today. 

It hurt. It hurt him so bad to even think about it. 

He just wants Jin safe. Is that too much to ask for? 

"Joonie, look at me," Jin said, leaning forward, putting his finger under Namjoon's chin, pushing it up gently so that Namjoon would meet his eyes, "I can't promise you that, because I'll always protect you. I will always, always, keep you out of harm's way." 

"What good is protecting me when you're going to get hurt?" 

"I don't care about me getting hurt." 

"But I do, Jin!" Namjoon nearly screamed, pushing his hand away, "Fucking hell, Jin! How can you do something so reckless?! Do you know how it was like for me to watch the gun be pointed at you instead of me?! Do you know what it's like fearing that the person that you love would get hurt?!" 

"I know exactly how it feels," Jin said, quieter, voice unwaveringly calm, "Because I saw the gun pointed at you first." 

Namjoon sighed, "I just don't want you to get hurt." 

"I know." Jin said, slowly raising his hand and cupping Namjoon's cheek, leaning forward and placing his forehead against his, "I know." 

"I love you." Namjoon said, red rimmed eyes burning with tears again. 

"I love you, too," Jin said, "More than you know. So much more than you know." 

He leaned in first, capturing Namjoon's lips in a soft, gentle kiss. All the fears, tears, broken hearts and broken trust that once was, melted away with the searing passion of their lips against each other. They had each other back, and nothing and no one could burst the bubble that was beginning to form around them. 

Namjoon pulled away, breathing heavy as he rested his forehead against Jin's, needing to feel him, to know that he was here, next to him, safe. Alive. In love. 

"Come to bed, Joon." Jin said, lying back down. 

Namjoon nodded, only now realising how drained and tired he was. He lay back down on Jin's bare chest, hearing the strong thump of his heart. 

"Namjoon..." Jin said, trailing off, "I know this isn't the time, or place but I just wanted to ask-"

"I didn't know." Namjoon said, cutting him off, already knowing what he wanted to ask, "I really didn't know about Jimin, or the whole writing thing. All I knew about the entire situation was that Jimin got fired, and then he started working for Yoongi and the next thing I know, he was head over heels in love with Jungkook." 

Namjoon sighed. 

"Taehyung and him kept it all from me. They kept the fact that you were the leader of the Kim Clan from me, they kept the underground boxing thing from me..." Namjoon said. 

"Aren't you mad at them?" 

"I was." He answered honestly, "I was furious that they didn't tell me anything. But now, after listening to their side, how could I be? All they wanted to do was protect me. If anything, you should empathise with them. You're did the same thing, didn't you?"

Jin didn't want to respond, so he simply placed a kiss on Namjoon's forehead and reached over to turn his side lamp off. 

"Goodnight, Joon." 

Silence and darkness engulfed the room, leaving them only with each other's warmth and their thoughts. 

"Jin?" Namjoon asked, almost meekly. 

"Yeah?" 

"What's going to happen now?" 

"I don't know, Joon," He answered, his heartbeat picking up speed, anxiety and worry washing over him as he hugged Namjoon closer, hoping that the uneasiness that he was feeling would melt away, "I really don't know." 

 

~~~

 

Taehyung dealt with things alone. 

That's the easiest way to explain it. He's always been alone, for all of his life. Ever since he had lost his parents when he was 13 in a car accident. He didn't remember life before the car accident, if he was being honest. He likes to imagine that it was a happy life that he had lived. In his head, him, his dad and his mom were the picture perfect family. 

Young Taehyung would wake up in the morning, take a shower, get ready for school, go downstairs to his mom making breakfast, kissing his forehead while wishing him good morning and placing freshly made pancakes in front of him. His father would greet him with a smile, and his mother with a kiss good morning as he sat down at the dining table, reading a newspaper with fresh coffee and a buttered toast in front of him. There would be nothing but smiles, pleasant conversation and love in their household. 

But of course, all of that was just his imagination. 

Taehyung liked to joke with himself that the T in his name stood for Tragic. Torturous. Turmoil. Terrible. 

Because that's all his life was: Tragic and Terrible. And those memories are Torturous. And all they do is put him through Turmoil. 

After his parents died, no one wanted him. None of his extended family wanted him, and the orphanages and group homes were disastrous. He lived there till he was 16, and then moved as far away as he could. When he turned 18 and he could finally access the insurance money that he got from his parents dying, he moved away, got a nice place to stay, and revelled in the fact that he could be alone without people staring and making fun of him for being a loser. 

The first real friend he ever made was Jimin. Truth be told, he didn't make a friend in Jimin. Jimin saw him and made the first move to be friends. He didn't care that all Taehyung kept trying to do was push him away. He was always there for him, whenever he needed. And that's when Taehyung knew that this was what friendship was meant to be: Full of love, support, and never ending kindness. 

He wasn't used to that. 

When you're unkind to yourself, all you believe are the unkind words that are spoken. And that's all Taehyung believed that he was. He didn't think that he was worth anything more than the terrible, and torturous destiny that he come to believed in. 

But Jimin and Namjoon showed him otherwise. They showed him what it meant to be happy, what it meant to laugh, and smile, and cry if he needed to. But through it all, they held his hand and told him that the T in Taehyung stood for Terrific, Thoughtful, Thankful, Talented and Trustworthy. 

When Kang pointed the gun at Namjoon, all of the dark thoughts and feelings started seeping back into his bloodstream. He was the cause of this. His bad luck and terrible destiny caused all of this. 

He jumped at the sound of the gun going off, trigger being pulled. His first thought, even before he saw who was on the ground, was how it should have been him instead. And then he saw Jaehwan, falling to the ground, weightless, bloodied...Dead.

After Kang left, muttering some threat that Taehyung couldn't hear...his knees gave out and he dropped to the ground. His breathing got heavy, eyes blurry and he couldn't think. He just couldn't think. All that was in his head was the sound of the gunshot and the look of Jaehwan's eyes as the bullet lodged itself in his head. 

"Breathe. Taehyung, you have to breathe." 

A warm hand was placed on his back and another set of hands was pulling him up. 

"In and out, and in and out, and one more time-" 

He followed the sounds, breathing in and breathing out. Slowly.

The walls stopped closing in and the weight on his chest disappeared.

"You okay?" 

"He just saw someone get S-H-O-T, Yoongi! Obviously he's not okay!" Hoseok said, hitting Yoongi lightly on the shoulder. 

"You do realise that he's over 5 years old, right?! He can spell, Hoseok!" Yoongi countered. 

Taehyung let out a breath. Even through all of this, they could still joke around. 

"You okay, Tae?" Yoongi asked again, concern lacing his every syllable. 

"Are you?" Taehyung managed to ask through the breathlessness. 

Yoongi looked at Hoseok and then back at Taehyung, "We're more concerned about you right now." 

"I'm fine." He lied. He needed to be alone, "I'm just going to go home." 

"Not alone." Hoseok said immediately, "I'll drive you." 

"No." 

"Taehyung, I'm driving you and that's final." Yoongi said, looking at Hoseok, "I'm going to talk to Jin, you make sure he's okay and then I'll drive him." 

Hoseok nodded, watching Yoongi walk away, sadness filing his eyes. 

"You okay?" 

"You just watched a man get shot and you're asking me this?" Hoseok said bluntly. 

"You saw him too." 

"I've seen these things one too many times," He chuckled darkly. 

"Doesn't mean it gets any easier," Taehyung told him. 

Hoseok looked to the floor, hands clutched together. 

"Want to talk about it?" He asked Hoseok. 

"Just sad about losing everything, I guess," Hoseok said in passing, as if it didn't matter. 

"Lucky you then," Taehyung said, "You haven't lost everything." 

"Did you not see and hear what I did?"

"Look around Hoseok," Taehyung said, "If you had truly lost everything, they wouldn't be here, now would they. Yoongi wouldn't be by your side, Jimin and Namjoon wouldn't have come back, Jin wouldn't be trying to think of everything to get us safe and Jungkook wouldn't have fought in the ring." 

Hoseok looked away. Taehyung couldn't tell what he was trying to hide, but he knew that there was more than what Hoseok was letting on. There was so, so much more. 

"You have a family here, Hobi," Taehyung said softly, "A family that's never going to stop fighting until they live happily ever after."

"Shouldn't I be the one who's comforting you instead?" Hoseok said, a ghost of a smile playing on his lips, trying to divert the topic. 

Taehyung just shot him a sad smile, looking away. 

"They're your family too, you know," Hoseok said, softly. 

"I lost the right to that title a long time ago," Taehyung told him. 

"Tae I-" 

"Come on Taehyung," Yoongi said, looking down at his phone, tapping away, "I'll drop you back." 

"Goodbye Hoseok." Taehyung said. 

"Bye Tae..." Hoseok trailed off, eyes wide with an emotion that Taehyung could only describe as sadness. 

Yoongi fished in his pocket for the keys, stopping mid walk with Taehyung beside him. 

"Yoongi." Taehyung called out. 

"Mhmm?" He hummed in response, sticking his tongue out sightly as he dug through his pockets. 

"I think Hobi needs you more than I do right now," He said. 

"What?" Yoongi asked, finally looking up, eyebrows furrowed together. 

Taehyung just looked at him, and for the first time, Taehyung actually saw him. The real Yoongi. The one who wasn't hiding behind the staunch character that he was so used to playing. The one who wasn't just the gang member, or the owner of the gym. 

He saw the real Yoongi, the one who cares too much yet is looked at only as the cold one. The one who's always there for everyone when they need him, is the first port of call,. The one who raised Jungkook like his own son, his own brother, like his own family. The one who has been through so much, yet pushes all his problems aside to be there for others. 

The one who just wants love. 

That Yoongi. 

The pain in his eyes, and yearning for a better tomorrow. He saw that Yoongi. 

"Go." Taehyung said, "Go to him." 

You need him. He needs you. 

"Tae-" Yoongi barely voiced out. 

"I'm a big boy," Taehyung told him with what he hoped with a smile, he couldn't tell anymore, "I can take myself home."

"But Taehyung I-" 

"I'll see you tomorrow, Yoongi," He said, emptily, backing away slowly, knowing that if he didn't do this now, he probably wouldn't leave. He would be selfish and take comfort in something that wasn't his. 

So he walked away.

Taehyung was going to be alone again. 

Taehyung only knew how to deal with things alone. 

 

~~~

 

They stared at the ceiling, both on opposite sides of the bed, closer to the edge than they were to each other. 

Neither of them were sleeping, and they both knew that, yet neither of them wanted to talk either. Nervousness, fear, confusion...There were so many emotions lingering in the air, so many unsaid feelings, unsaid thoughts, unsaid fears and worries that they wanted to say. But neither of them had the courage to. 

So they lay down next to each other in silence in a room that they once considered their sanctuary. In the same room that they once made promises to each other in, the same room they confessed their love, tangled their limbs with, made love in.... 

And now, they couldn't even say a word to each other. 

So much had changed in such a little time, they didn't recognise themselves, or each other. 

"You broke your promise." Were the first words uttered, breaking the silence.

"What?" Jimin asked, turning his head to look at the silhouette of Jungkook, eyes adjusted to the dim lighting. 

"You broke your promise to me," Jungkook repeated, "Again."

"Again?" Jimin asked, confused. 

Jungkook scoffed, husky and low, tiredness seeping into his voice, "You don't even remember what you promised me, do you?" 

"It's been a long night." Jimin said, as if that was a good enough excuse.

The room was engulfed in silence again, tension hanging in the air. 

"You said you would run," Jungkook told him, "You promised me you would run, and that you wouldn't look back, and you broke that promise." 

"I'd never leave you." 

"I used to believe that." He said, "I really did. I used to believe everything you would tell me. I used to believe that you would be there for me, and that you would love me unconditionally. I used to believe that we would tell each other everything, and that I was worth love...For god's sake, I used to believe that you were the one person who would never hurt me, Jimin." 

His chest was heaving, breath getting heavier, eyelashes wet with tears that he would never allow himself to shed. Not now at least. 

"I don't know what to believe anymore." Jungkook said, darkness surrounding him. 

"I know I broke your trust, and that I'm probably not going to be able to gain it back," Jimin said, cautiously, treading on eggshells, "But I never lied about how I felt. Ever. What I felt for you, what I feel for you was never a lie. I love you, and even if you don't believe me, I will continue to love you until you do. I never broke my promise to you Jungkook. I"m always going to be here for you." 

Jungkook wanted to protest. He wanted to scream, and shout, and tear everything down, throw things against the wall until the pain inside his chest just...stopped. But he didn't. He was tired. He was so, so tired. His body didn't move. It couldn't. Like his heart, his body too was broken down. 

So he laid there, listening to Jimin's words, hoping that maybe, just maybe, Jimin would say something and he would finally have an excuse to not love him. 

"Do you remember what I said to you that night?" Jimin asked, not expecting an answer back. 

I remember everything you said to me. I remember what all of your touches felt like. I remember the day we met, the first time we kissed. I remember how your hand feels in mine, and the way your eyes light up when you talk about your favourite thing. I remember the colour of your eyes, and the way your dimples form when you smile. I remember the first time you said you loved me, and the last. I remember everything about you. 

But Jungkook said nothing. 

"I told you that if I found myself someone I care about, like truly care about, that I would make them promise me something," Jimin said, "And then I promised you the same thing." 

Jungkook said nothing. 

"And I meant every single word." Jimin said, voice thick with tears, "Jungkook, what I feel for you isn't a lie. And I know that what I did was shitty, but I promise that I was going to quit. Writing for me, was everything. It had always been my dream to have my name on a door, and a secretary, and publish my works. All I want is for people to read what I write and enjoy it! I wanted to be editor. I wanted all of that. And I'm not going to lie to you anymore, so when you're ready...I'll tell you everything." 

"What about me?" Was all Jungkook said. 

"What about you?" 

"Were you ever going to tell me?" Jungkook asked, "And the rest of us? We took you in when we thought you had nothing and for you to just collect all of that information and-" 

"The day that you got the package, I told Taehyung that I was going to quit," Jimin said. 

"Is that supposed to make me feel better?! Do you know what it felt like finding out that the person that you thought you loved just wanted you for a piece in a fucking newspaper?!" 

"It's not like that." Jimin said, weakly. 

"Then what is it like, Jimin? Because I'm trying to understand why the person who kept saying that they loved me, and cared for me, collected all that information about my family and I and just..." Jungkook said, scoffing, unable to finish his sentence. 

Jimin reached over and turned the side light on, bathing the room in a bright yellow light. He sat up and looked at Jungkook who had his eyes shut, so accustomed to the darkness that the sudden presence of light burned him. 

"Do you want to hear the whole truth now?" Was all Jimin asked, leaning against the wooden headboard of the bed. 

"I'm tired, Jimin." Jungkook said, scared. 

"So am I." Jimin said, "I'm exhausted, Jungkook. And I can't live with myself knowing how much I hurt you." 

"In the gym you said that all of this, was just for tonight," Jungkook said, finally looking up at Jimin, eyes devoid of any stars and galaxies, of any emotion, "Did you mean it?" 

Jimin nodded, slowly. 

Jungkook played with the frayed threads on the blanket, choosing his words carefully, "Can we pretend it never happened? Just for tonight." 

"And tomorrow?" Jimin asked, voice small. 

"We can worry about that in the morning." 

"If you don't want me-" 

"Please, Jimin," Jungkook almost pleaded, voice heavy, lump growing in his throat, "Just for tonight. Please." 

He nodded. He didn't know who needed this more - him or Jungkook. 

"C'mere," Jungkook said, holding his arms out, waiting for Jimin to crawl in between them. 

Jimin leaned his head down, not bothering to turn off the light. If this was his last night with Jungkook, he wanted to memorise every little detail, trace every scar, ghost over any new wounds, hear his heartbeat one last time. 

"You look tired," Jimin observed, head on Jungkook's bare chest, thumb ghosting over the wound on his hip from the fight that night. 

"I'm exhausted." Jungkook answered, finally able to breathe again. It was like suddenly everything was falling into place. His chest didn't hurt anymore and the shards of glass that used to stab the cavity in his chest didn't feel as sharp. 

"Sleep." 

"I haven't been able to sleep in a while," He told him. 

"Why not?" 

With puffy, tired eyes, he looked down at Jimin laying on his chest, words resting heavy on his tongue, and broken heart, as he said, "I've been homesick." 

In a quiet voice, one barely above a whisper, and his eyes shut tight, as though this moment was just about to escape him, Jimin said,

"Me too."

Jungkook let out a shuddering breath, scared to admit this out loud, "I'm not anymore." 

Jimin felt a pang in his heart, "Neither am I." 

"Goodnight Jiminie," Jungkook said, closing his eyes, trying to remember what this felt like, as though living it for one last time. It was as if if he opened his eyes in the morning, Jimin wouldn't be here, he wouldn't be on his chest, he wouldn't be touching him, he wouldn't be able to feel Jimin's breath on his bare, bruised and battered chest. 

"Goodnight Kookie." Jimin said back, hand clutching Jungkook's waist just a little tighter, needing to feel his warmth beneath his fingertips. 

They slept with the light on that night.

 

~~~

 

Hoseok was sitting on the bleachers of the gym, head hung low, as Yoongi glared at him, leaning against the white post of the boxing ring. 

"Are you going to say anything?" Yoongi almost demanded, angrily, hands crossed across his chest. 

"Nothing that I haven't already." Hoseok told him. 

"Fucking hell, Hoseok! Are you just going to pretend like tonight didn't happen?!" 

Yoongi needed to be alone. That's the only way he could process these emotions. These past couple of months have ben incredibly eventful and Yoongi felt like he had no time to breathe, let alone think about how he felt. Emotions, to him, had always been a luxury. Feeling, had always been a luxury. In the line of work he was in, he wasn't supposed to have feelings, or any other sentimental thoughts, because all that made you, was weak. And Yoongi couldn't afford to be weak. 

But then Hoseok came along, and suddenly, it was like he didn't remember what being weak felt like. Hoseok became his anchor, his best friend, his love, the person he needed by his side. His family. 

But then he got stabbed, and Yoongi's world flipped upside down. And he remembered what he did for a living. He couldn't stop blaming himself for getting involved. Sure, Hoseok was no angel, and Yoongi knew the kind of background that he came from. The very first time Yoongi met him, he was running away from people who wanted to kill him, so it wasn't like this world of Yoongi's was new to Hoseok. But still, Yoongi got him involved in the gang, and he became Jin's right hand man. The right hand man for the biggest gang in the city, who was now in the hospital. 

To put the cherry on top of Yoongi's fucked up cake, Jimin entered his life, along with Taehyung and Namjoon. Yoongi wasn't going to lie. He took to Jimin very quickly, mainly because he reminded him of a 15 year old Jungkook, with his determination to want to protect himself and a fire in his eyes that he hadn't seen for a long, long time. 

They became a family, all 7 of them, and Yoongi couldn't have been happier. And that, was dangerous. Every time, every single time, that Yoongi was happy, something or someone would snatch that happiness away from him.

It started with hi adopted father, and then to Jin, then to Hoseok, and then Jimin, and now...

Now he didn't know if he would ever get to be part of a family anymore. He didn't know if he wanted to. 

He just wanted to be happy... That's all Yoongi ever wanted. 

So when Taehyung told him that he could take himself home, Yoongi couldn't help but feel a sense of relief. He needed to be alone for a while. Just a little while, to sort his head out, and try to get it back in the game. The next two days would be crucial and Yoongi couldn't afford to be distracted, not even a little bit. He walked around, not knowing where he was going, but crossing streets and ambling along the mostly empty sidewalks anyway. 

He breathed in the cool, fresh, crisp night air, sidewalks being illuminated by the moonlight and the dim yellow street lights. 

He didn't know how long he walked for, didn't even know where he went or thought about, or even did. He just walked, and walked, and walked, and walked. And the next thing he knew, his legs were carrying him straight through the back of the gym doors. 

It was dark. Very, very dark. 

Nothing in the gym was on, yet Yoongi could sense a presence in the room. His hand immediately reached over and turned the lights on. He didn't have any weapons on him, and he knew that what he did was stupid. But he did it anyway. 

His breath got caught in his throat when he saw Hoseok, carrying a duffel bag, almost out the front door of the gym. 

"What are you doing?" Yoongi asked. 

"I thought you wouldn't be back until morning," Hoseok said, as if guilty, glancing at the clock and then back at Yoongi. 

5:07am. 

"Ar-Are you going somewhere?" Yoongi asked, wanting to be firm and serious, but his voice betrayed him by breaking in the middle, lump slowly taking form in his throat. 

"Yoongs.." Was all Hoseok could manage, looking away, guiltily. 

"You're leaving aren't you?" Yoongi said, more than he asked, blinking away tears. 

"You weren't meant to b-" 

"Meant to what!?! Find you here? Leaving like this?!" Yoongi snapped, screaming, voice bouncing off the empty walls of the gym, "What were you going to do, huh, Hoseok? Leave in the middle of the night with no goodbye and no nothing?! Were you going to fucking abandon me?!" 

"Yoongi, please ju-" 

"Please, what?!" He screamed, voice breaking in between, "Were you just going to leave because shit is tough now?! Is that it?! You're leaving just because things aren't easy anymore?" 

Hoseok said nothing as angry tears streamed down Yoongi's cheeks, glistening underneath the harsh white lighting of the gym. 

"So all of that shit you spewed to Jin and us, did that mean nothing to you?! Do we mean nothing to you?! Does Jin and Jungkook mean nothing?! All that fucking bullshit you said about family, was that all a lie too?!" Yoongi yelled, words tumbling out of his mouth, hoping that Hoseok would change his mind. 

Hi chest was heaving, heart heavy, the lump in his throat only growing bigger and bigger.

In a soft, broken, and tired voice, he said, "Do I mean nothing to you, Hoseok?" 

Silence fell in the gym for the first time in a long, long time. Air hung heavy around the two of them, both on the opposite ends of the gym. 

 

Hoseok didn't know what to say, and neither did Yoongi. The duffel bag sat by Hoseok's feet. 

"We lost the gang." Hoseok said. 

"I know." Yoongi spat, "I was there." 

"And I wasn't." Hoseok told him, looking up, almost guiltily. 

"And running away is going to solve your guilt?" 

Hoseok took a deep breath. 

"I never had a family-" 

"So what the fuck are we?!" Yoongi yelled, cutting him off. 

"Let me speak, Yoongi." Hoseok almost begged. 

"Fine." 

"I never had a family. My parents didn't want me and neither did anyone else. I lived alone. I lived as a nomad. I lived to survive the day, not knowing if another was in my destiny or not," Hoseok said, looking at his shoes, not having the courage to face Yoongi, "But then I met you. I met you while running away from a life I didn't want anymore...And the next thing I knew, all I saw was a life with you. You became my family, and then Jungkook did, and then Jin and Jimin and Tae and Joon, and now...I thought I had a family. I thought that I made a forever family with you guys...But it doesn't look like this is going to last. And that's why I ran." 

"So, you're running away because you're scared." Yoongi concluded. 

"I came from a broken family, Yoongi, I can't bear to stay in one now." Hoseok said, tired eyes glistening with unshed tears.

Yoongi crouched down in front of Hoseok, "We fight for what we want. We don't run away because things are hard, Hobi." 

"I'm scared," He said, shakily. 

"So am I, Hobi. So am I." 

Hoseok let out a shuddering breath, deflating. 

"Come on," Yoongi said, standing up and holding out his hand. 

"Where are we going?" 

"Home."

 

~~~

 

"Kang!" Roscoe called out, walking with a glass of whiskey in his hand. 

Kang sat in what used to be Jaehwan's throne, running his hands over the fabric and the sides, admiring it. He understood now why Jaehwan thrived off the power and how he became to be what he was. Having people fear you made Kang feel invincible. He fed off the strife that he was causing, the pain that he had inflicted, the fact that no one wanted to be on his bad side and was doing anything and everything they could to win his favour. 

"I-I brought you a dr-drink." Roscoe stuttered, shakily placing the crystal glass in front of him.

"Tell me something, Roscoe." Kang said. 

"Ye-Yes?" 

"How do you think Jin and his little mutts should be dealt with? By gun? Torture? Or something else?' Kang asked him, snapping his fingers and pointing to the drink. 

"You're going to k-kill them?" Roscoe asked, eyes blown wide as he stared at Kang. 

"Give me my drink." Kang said through gritted teeth, patience wearing thin as he leaned back on the chair.

"Oh I um-" Roscoe scrambled, grabbing the crystal glass, making some droplets splash around and onto Kang's bare forearm.

Kang stared at the amber liquid, blending into his skin, virtually unnoticeable. He flicked it off with one finger. 

"If you hadn't been the reason I got Jin's money, you would have have a bullet in your head right now," Kang said, calmly; too calmly.

"Sorry, Jaehw-Umm, I mean Kang." Roscoe stuttered, fear encompassing him. 

Kang set his drink down, looking at Roscoe, "Did you just call me Jaehwan?" 

"N-No, Kang. I didn't. I swear. It was a mistake. A slip of the tongu-" Roscoe started to fumble, words tumbling out of his mouth, hoping that something, anything, would stop Kang from killing him.  

"What's your favourite memory, Roscoe?" Kang asked him leaning back in his chair, putting his feet on the table in front of him, just shy of his drink. 

"W-what?" 

"Your favourite memory," Kang repeated, "What is it? Your mom's cooking? Maybe an outing? First time fucking someone? What's your favourite memory?" 

"It's the first time that my dad and I went fishing," Roscoe answered with a nostalgic smile on his face, "He woke me up at the crack of dawn when I was 15 and we drove three hours to his favourite lake. We didn't catch any fish that day but it's something that I never forget." 

Kang shot him a smile. 

"Think about the memory." 

Before Roscoe could even blink, the sound of a gunshot echoed around the club. Kang leaned forward and grabbed the glass as he saw Roscoe, reach up and touch the side of his chest, hands covered with blood as soon as his fingertips made contact with where the bullet lodged itself. He gasped and stuttered for breath, tears leaking down his cheeks as he fell, face first into the carpet. 

And all Kang did was watch, and sip his whiskey, leaning back into his chair. 

"What a pity," He said, clicking his tongue, watching the life slowly drain away from Roscoe right in front of his eyes, "And to think that you had so much potential." 

 

Chapter Text

Safe. Warm. Safe. Warm. Safe. Warm. Sa-

Those were the only words running through Jimin's mind as he roused from sleep, the bright rays of the sun slipping under the blackout curtains in Jungkook's room muted by the bright yellow light that was already on. He turned his head, soft pink hair falling over his eyes as he revelled in the warmth of Jungkook's chest. He opened his eyes, eyelashes fluttering against his cheek as he looked at Jungkook. 

He could see him clear as day. Dark splotches of purple littered his face and chest, hand tight against Jimin's waist, holding him close as if he was going to disappear into the dark that didn't exist in the room.

Jimin's hand snaked away from holding onto Jungkook, trailing up his chest, ghosting over the bruises, making his way up to Jungkook's jaw. His finger trailed lightly, softly, gently, over Jungkook's jawline, tracing over the defined splotches of blue and purple as if just touching it would make them disappear like they never existed in the first place.  

Jimin's seen bruises on Jungkook before, countless amount of times even, yet it never got easier. Watching Jungkook get hurt, watching him in pain, watching fists disappear into his skin, watching blood trail from his honey brown skin onto the floor, never got easier. Tears sprang into Jimin's eyes, the events of the last few days rushing back into his memory. But he blinked them away. 

If this was going to be his last few hours with Jungkook, he didn't want to spend them worrying. He wanted to remain in this bubble that he created for them. A bubble where nothing was wrong. Where they were in love, and happy. Where gangs didn't exist, and neither did sadness. Where the only bruises that they had were ones that were induced from passion. 

Where they were and always would remain happy. 

Jimin dropped his hand, nuzzling himself further into Jungkook's chest, and shut his eyes, and let Jungkook's warm embrace lull him back to sleep. 

Safe. Warm. Safe. Warm. Safe. Warm. Safe. War-

 

~~~

 

A cup of now cold coffee laid in front of each of them, neither one of them saying a word, leaving the air tense with a suffocating silence. 

Yoongi was the first one to send the silence crashing to the ground, his words cutting like a brick through glass. 

"Are we just going to ignore what happened last night?" 

"I thought we put it behind us?" Hoseok asked. 

"Put it be-" Yoongi scoffed, voice raised, "You tried to fucking run away from all of us with no note, no explanation..No nothing!" 

"I told you why-" Hoseok tried to explain calmly, but Yoongi wasn't having any of it. 

"How do I know you're not going to run again, huh, Hoseok?" Yoongi spat, "Things are only going to get harder from now on! We're in the middle of a full on fucking gang war and both of us know how that pans out." 

"I'm not going to run." Hoseok said, eyes still fixated downwards to the mug. 

Yoongi's chest was heaving now, fear and worry consuming him, "How can I trust that, Hoseok? How do I know that you're going to stick around when things are rough?" 

He looked up, eyes glistening, "Don't trust the Hoseok that you met yesterday. He was scared. He didn't know what he was doing. All he knew was fear. Fear that no one wanted him, fear that he was going to be alone again like he was all his life. Trust the Hoseok that you've loved all these years that we've known each other." 

Yoongi slumped down in his seat, deflating. 

"I'm scared too, Hobi," Yoongi admitted, "God, I'm terrified!" 

"You? Scared?" Hoseok said, a small smile on his face, "Not a chance."  

"I'm scared, Hoseok." He said again, wanting Hoseok to listen to him. To really listen. 

"Why?" 

"Look at what we do, Hobi. We're in a fucking gang for Christ's sake! We kill! We hurt! We get hurt...When I heard you were in the hospital after getting stabbed, I just..." He said, a lump forming in his throat.

Hoseok got up, rounding the table and kneeling in front of him, "I'm here, Yoongi. I'm right here. Nothing's wrong with me. I'm alive." 

"You were in a coma." Yoongi managed to get out. 

"But I'm not anymore."

Silence descended upon them, embracing them, enveloping them. 

"We're cowards, Hobi." 

"How?" 

"We're living together, and we say that we love each other, we've had sex countless amounts of time, we do everything together, and yet we don't have the courage to tell anyone that we're dating." Yoongi said, a bitter laugh escaping him. 

"Everyone knows it." Hoseok said, as if that was a good enough reason. 

"Everyone knows that we're dating even though we don't know it?" Yoongi told him.

"Do you want to define the relationship? Do you really want a label on what we are?" 

"Don't you?"

"I love you." Hoseok told him.

"I know." Yoongi said, shifting his gaze from Hoseok to anywhere else.

"Yoongi, look at me," Hoseok said, gently, adoringly, as he reached his hand out to Yoongi's face, cupping his cheek and making him look at Hoseok, "The day I met you was the day that my life turned around in the best possible way. Meeting you was the best thing that the Universe has ever done for me, and falling in love with you was the kindest thing that I ever did for myself. I don't know what's going to happen tomorrow, or even an hour from now, but all I know is that, if I don't get to call you my boyfriend and shout it on top of rooftops, I will spend every single moment of my life regretting it." 

"Hobi..." 

"Will you, Min Yoongi, love of my life, be my boyfriend?" 

"You're an idiot you know," Yoongi said, mouth breaking out into a gummy grin. 

"Yeah, but you're kind of stuck with me," Hoseok said with a smile on his face. 

"Fortunately for me, I am," He replied, love and adoration in his eyes. 

"So, am I your boyfriend?"

"Only if I'm yours." Yoongi replied. 

"Thank god," Hoseok said with a sigh, "It would have made for a very awkward lunch seeing as how we live together and stuff." 

 

 

~~~

 

Jungkook blinked himself awake, wincing at the sudden flood of light. He wanted to bring his hand up to shield his face, but a weight was on it, preventing him from moving. 

Jimin. He's still here. 

Jungkook looked down at his bruised chest, ignoring the pang in his heart as he stared down onto the soft, fluffy pink haired man that lay on his chest like he belonged there; like Jungkook's chest was meant to be his pillow, lulling him to sleep. 

Home. Jimin felt like home, and there was no denying it. 

Jungkook had to resist the urge to run his fingers through Jimin's hair like he used to do when they were together. They weren't dating anymore and that was a fact that was still hard for Jungkook to fathom. He was still in love with Jimin and everyone knew it, even if he wanted to deny it, even if he didn't want to admit it out loud - He was still so, so in love with him. 

The words he spoke last night played on a loop in his head. 

Just for tonight. 
Just for tonight.
Just for tonight. 

He didn't know if he truly meant it or not. Deep down in his heart, he knew that he should. For his sake, he should keep Jimin at arms length. He didn't want to though. He was only doing it for self preservation. 

It's one thing if he's hurt physically, because that could be easily cured. He could put ointment, be on bed rest, go to the doctor and even take pills. 
But it's another thing to be heartbroken. Because, that can never be cured. 

Heartbreak was lying on your bed, trying your damn hardest to breathe while wondering where it all went wrong, why it all went wrong and how you were so blind as to not see the signs. It was wondering how you were going to get up the next day and pretend like everything was alright, and try to go about the day with a smile on your face so no one would ask you what was wrong. It was about trying with whatever strength you had left, however much or however little it was to see the day through and not think at all about the damn hole in your chest and what you were going to do about it. 

He didn't want to admit it, but right here, right now, with Jimin, the hole was gone. The void was filled and his heart was full again. 

And he knew this because, even without making a conscious effort, his hand was already carding through Jimin's hair. 

His body was so fine-tuned to Jimin, and he didn't even know it. 

Truth be told, Jungkook was terrified. He didn't want to lose Jimin. Not again. He couldn't. 

But he was scared. Terrified. Petrified, even. He didn't want to listen to Jimin's explanation either. He didn't want to know if all he was to Jimin was a pawn in his game. Because, Jungkook fell. For the first time in his life, he was actually in love. He wasn't in it for the sex, neither was he in it just to pass time. He was genuinely in love. He woke up every morning with a smile on his face, and his heart full. He actually looked forward to the day and to talking to Jimin and telling him about every little thing, every thought, every feeling, every time he smiled, and every time that he didn't. He missed him when he was gone and counted down the hours, minutes, seconds and till he could see him again. 

He looked down at Jimin sleeping peacefully and suddenly the memories of the last few days surged through his mind. And Jungkook couldn't believe it. He couldn't believe that even after everything, he still loved him. He tried not to, god knows he did; but he's still in love. Jungkook tried to hate Jimin. Tried to scream and shout that he didn't love him. Tried to tell himself that he hated him, and wanted nothing more to do with him! Tried to tell himself that he felt nothing and all Jimin was to him was just another cheap fuck. He didn't feel anything for him but hatred and lust. 

But he didn't. 

He loved him. Even after everything. He still loved him. He fell in love with his heart and his soul, and he knew, with every single cell, atom and fibre of his being, that despite everything Jimin did, he was a good person. And that his love was timeless and unwavering. 

Jimin stirred on his chest and Jungkook immediately dropped his hand, stiffening at the contact. 

Their time together was ending. The bubble as bursting, reality trickling in, almost suffocating. 

"Kookie." Were Jimin's first words, husky yet soft and gentle, as he nuzzled further into Jungkook's bruised chest. 

Jungkook swallowed harshly through the lump in his throat and let out a staccatoed breath, shutting his eyes. He didn't want to face the music yet. He wanted to be here, in bed, where he could pretend in his head that everything was alright and that he was still happily in love. 

But he couldn't. 

It's amazing the lengths people would go to to avoid dealing with their own emotions.

Jungkook reached over the side table, trying to ignore how right Jimin felt pressed up against him. He tried to ignore the way electricity flowed through his veins, tried to ignore the way that his skin seared so deliciously, how every nerve ending in his body sang, and how he didn't feel so empty anymore. 

"What time is it?" Jimin groaned against him.

Jungkook didn't answer as he unlocked his phone and went through his messages one by one, trying to take his mind off any other thoughts that he might have. 

"Kookie?" Jimin asked again, blinking himself awake. 

Jungkook wriggled away from Jimin's grip, pushing him off his chest, without hurting him, and sat on the edge of the bed, eyes still trained on his phone. 

"Jungkook, what's wrong?" Jimin asked, sitting up, hand immediately finding purchase on Jungkook's bare, warm shoulder. 

"I have to go." Jungkook grunted out, standing up. 

"But-" 

"You need to leave." 

"Jungkook, I-" 

"You said it was just for tonight." Jungkook reminded him, a sharp pang stabbing his heart, "The night's over." 

Reality set in. And it hurt the both of them. 

"I'm not leaving." Jimin said, firm. 

"Then I'll go." Jungkook breathed out, walking towards the bedroom door, harsh lighting accentuating his every move. 

"I made a mistake-" Jimin started out, pushing the blankets off of him so that he could stand up. 

"So did I." Jungkook said, wanting it to hurt Jimin. Wanting his words to cut Jimin the same way that Jimin's actions hurt him. 

"I'm not letting you go. Not without a fight." 

"Hasn't there been enough fighting, Jimin? Can't you just leave now?" Jungkook said, tongue bitter with words that he never wanted to speak. He didn't mean them. He didn't mean any of them, but he had to say it. He needed to protect his heart. He didn't want to get hurt again.

"I'm not leaving!" Jimin said, standing in front of him, "Not until I get to explain what happened." 

"We're in the middle of a fucking gang war and all you care about is -"

"I don't care!" Jimin shouted, resisting the urge to cup Jungkook's cheek and forcing him to look into Jimin's eyes, "Now more than ever you need people on your side." 

Jungkook backed away, "I don't need anyone." 

"You more than anyone need people who love you by your side." Jimin told him gently, "You're the one person in the world who is most deserving of love." 

"If you had told me that a couple of days ago, I might have actually believed you." 

"I will tell you this every single day until you start believing it again, Jeon Jungkook." 

They stood there silently, looking at each other, a million things left unsaid, and a million more that didn't need to be said at all. 

"Even if I have to spend the rest of my life apologising to you, I will," Jimin told him, "I'm not leaving, Jungkook. Not now. Not ever." 

Jungkook turned away from Jimin, walking into the bathroom and closing the door behind him. 

Jimin stared at the brown wood of the door and whispered, "Through thick and thin, and everything in between." 

 

~~~

 

Jin glanced over at Namjoon at the passenger seat of his car, who was deep in thought, chin jutted out, absentmindedly playing  with Jin's fingers that was intertwined with his, resting on his thigh. 

"You think really loudly, you know?" Jin said, fondness in his voice as he looked back at the road. 

"Hmm?" 

"What's on your mind, baby?" Jin asked him, "What's got you so deep in thought?" 

"Oh just.." Namjoon said, trailing off noncommittally. 

"What is it, Joonie?" Jin asked, "You can tell me." 

"Just..." He said, before deciding to bite the bullet. "Jin?" 

"Yeah?" 

"What would you be doing if you weren't in the gang?" Namjoon asked. 

"Oh." Jin said, deflating slightly, eyes furrowed deeply, wrinkles appearing on his forehead. 

"I didn't mean to-" 

"No, no, it's not that," Jin said quickly before Namjoon could finish apologising, "It's just.." 

Namjoon kept silent, giving Jin the time and space he needed to finish his thought. His eyes scanned Jin's face, wishing that he could be looking at his eyes instead. He always did say that the key to understanding Jin's soul is through his eyes. And Namjoon's got a Master's Degree in that. The whole world could think that Jin had the best poker face in the world, but Namjoon knows better. Namjoon knows that he has the worst poker face. His mouth would be in a harsh line, as if he was serious and had no thoughts. But his eyes...His eyes would say a million things, and tell you every secret you wanted to know, and every secret that you could never know. 

"No one has ever asked me that before." Jin said, "My whole life...I was never given a choice. This life was thrust upon me at such a young age, and it wasn't a forgiving job. One small mistake that I did could cause a thousand people their lives. I had a very steep learning curve, and I just...I don't think mundanity was ever in my cards. I don't have the luxury of even thinking about what life would be like without the gang." 

"Do you want it, though?" Namjoon asked, "A life without the gang." 

 "I'd be lying if I said no," Jin told him honestly, "But I'd also be lying if I said yes." 

Jin took a deep breath, chest feeling heavier than usual. 

"These people have become my family," Jin said, "And I can't just abandon my family to live a normal, mundane life." 

"What would you do if you didn't have the gang?" 

"I'd finish college," Jin said with a smile, "I'd live in those small dorm rooms and get the experience, you know? The one with late nights and takeaway that I'm not meant to have. The cold food and crappy canteens. The staying up all night and getting drunk with my housemates. The all nighters with the assignments that I procrastinated..." 

"And then what?" 

"I'd get my degree in culinary school and open up my own cafe." Jin said, "I'd bake, and eat what I bake even though I'm not supposed to. I'd wake up knowing that the cafe was my decision and my decision alone. I'd live the life I'd always wanted but could never have..." 

Namjoon tightened his fingers around Jin's, "Gang or no gang, I'm always going to be here." 

Jin brought their intertwined fingers to his lips, turning it and kissing Namjoon's knuckles, "And that's why I fell in love with you." 

 

~~~

 

Jimin and Jungkook were the last to arrive at the gym that evening.

Jimin tried to swallow the bile that rose up in his throat, the events of last night pouring back into his memory. The loud bang of the gunshot. The red of Jaehwan's blood that stained the floor. The little pieces of meat of his brain that flew all around him. 

Jimin let out a deep, shaky breath, avoiding looking at the floor as he walked through the doors of the gym, eyes trained on the back of Jungkook's grey shirt.

They walked in to from a tense, silence atmosphere into a suffocating one. One filled with fear, worry and distrust. 

"What's going on?" Jimin whispered to Taehyung, taking a seat next to him. 

"Joon was just about to tell everyone about Kang." 

"What about him?" Jimin asked, confused. 

"Aren't you the least bit curious about why he killed Jaehwan and how he got all of that money?" Taehyung whispered back. 

"I was more concerned about Jungkook," Jimin said, glancing over at Jungkook who was sitting as far away from Jimin as possible. 

"How's that going?" Taehyung asked, eyes flickering between the both of them, able to see the palpable tension between the two. 

Jimin sighed, "Can't blame him for hating me." 

"The last thing Jungkook is capable of doing, is hating you." Taehyung said. 

"Doesn't feel that way."

"If he hated you Chim, he wouldn't have brought you here." Was all Taehyung said as he patted Jimin's knee sympathetically. 

"Namjoon." Jin called out loudly, drawing everyone's attention to him, "Start, please." 

Namjoon stood up and walked to lean against the post of the ring, so that he could see the rest of them. 

"I know that it's been a really taxing couple of days both emotionally, mentally and even physically," Namjoon started.

Jungkook scoffed, leaning back against the wood of the bleachers. 

"But this is bigger than just us." Namjoon continued, looking straight at Jungkook, "I know that's unfair to say, but really, what I'm about to tell you is way bigger than any of us. This doesn't just involve us. It involved two gangs, and countless amounts of lives and-" 

"Skip the monologue and go straight into how the fuck Kang got to where he is," Jungkook said, annoyed, cutting Namjoon off. 

"Kook." Jin warned. 

"What?" Jungkook said, eyebrows furrowed, "Don't you want to know how Kang who was Jaehwan's fucking lapdog, who literally couldn't even stand up for himself, suddenly shot Jaehwan in the fucking head without even blinking?! And now this motherfucker wants to take our whole gang?! And he expects us to comply to his every demand?!" 

"Kid's got a point, Jin," Yoongi spoke up. 

"Stop interrupting Namjoon and maybe we'll find out," Jin said, sighing, looking at Namjoon and giving him a nod to continue.

"Jin gave Taehyung and I some accounts to look over. I won't bore you with the math, but basically what we found was that money was missing. And I'm not talking about a couple hundreds of dollars, I'm talking about tens of thousands." Namjoon started, eyebrows furrowed, chin jutting out as he started to explain, "We immediately knew that someone was embezzling, but whoever it was, had to be good because he covered his tracks well, almost too well. It looked like a professional job. They were taking from every single account in every single department. Papers were backdated, and money was being laundered like nothing I have ever seen, and I work in accounts. We flipped through all of the accounts dating back months and months until we finally found when it started." 

The rest of them were fully focused, eyes narrowed, looking and listening intently. 

"We traced it back to the Underground Fighting Department." Namjoon said. 

"Underground Fighting..." Jin said, confused, "But Namjoon-"

"I know," Namjoon said immediately, as if able to read his mind, "The underground scene is a No Man's Land. Which is why I was confused at first too. So, I did some digging, and I found a couple of things out. One person from each gang is meant to send their people too organise it, and pay some funds to keep it up as well. Eleven months ago, Jaehwan sent Kang to try and gather some dirt." 

"Who did we send?" Yoongi asked, trying to remember but drawing up a blank. 

"Does the name Roscoe ring any bells?" Namjoon asked. 

"Roscoe is that 17 year old, isn't he? He was kicked out of his house by his drunkard father," Jin answered. 

"That's the one." Yoongi said, affirming it with a nod. 

"He's the one who took all the money and gave it to Kang," Namjoon said, ripping off the band-aid, "I don't know why he did it. All I know is that the money was given to Kang and the accounts can prove it. Roscoe was the one who took it, and I'm sure as hell Kang taught him how to." 

"Jin," Jungkook called out, suddenly remembering something, "Isn't Roscoe the one who also organises and plans the fight list?"

"Yeah." 

"Do you think that he manipulated the fight list and put Jimin's name down instead?" Jungkook said, thinking out loud. 

Jin's eyes flashed a dark colour, turning dangerous, "I'm starting to believe that Jaehwan was never really the brain's of the operation to begin with."

"What are we going to do?" Jimin asked, "Time is ticking." 

"You aren't going to do anything." Jin said, snapping at Jimin, "Why the fuck are you here anyway?" 

"Jin, he's-" Taehyung started to say but Jin cut him off.

"Both of you shouldn't be here." Jin gritted out, venom lacing his every syllable.

"I don't think you can afford to lose anymore man power right now, don't you, Jin?" Taehyung spat back, blood boiling. 

"Tae." Jimin said, nudging him lightly. 

"Other than lying, what can the both of you do, anyway?" Jin retorted. 

"Enough! Both of you!" Jimin yelled, standing up. 

"Leave." Jin demanded after a beat of silence, "Right now."

"I'm not going anywhere," Jimin said, standing firm, "I'm not running away and neither am I leaving without giving you an explanation." 

"You lied, Jimin. What else is there to say?" Jin said. 

Jimin looked straight at Jungkook who looked like he wanted to say something, but chose to sit back with his eyes downcast. 

"A lot." Jimin said, eyes trained on Jungkook, "I have a lot to say." 

"Jin." Yoongi said, nodding. 

Jin leaned back, and crossed his hands over his chest, tongue in his cheek. "Two minutes. You have two minutes." 

Jimin nodded and stood up, standing in front of them, nervous. But he knew that he brought this upon himself and that it was time to face the music. 

"I worked as a journalist who wrote for a paper. My boss called me in one day and was going to fire me," Jimin started, "I begged for my job back. Writing for me is literally my life. It's something that I have wanted to do since I was a kid and to actually have a job that I don't hate, and actually have a job that I look forward to going to every morning to me was a blessing. My boss told me that I had 3 days to come up with an idea for a story, or I would be fired. On the third night, Taehyung took me to see an underground fight." 

Jungkook took a sharp breath in, the memory of their first meeting flooding back into his mind. 

"You have pink hair. You care about manners. You're polite. You're every mother in laws wet dream. You don't belong here." 
"You're making a lot of assumptions for someone who's the stereotype of a brooding bad boy."

"When I first saw you in the locker room," Jimin said, looking straight at Jungkook, "I knew nothing about you other than the fact that you were JK, the same guy I saw in the ring. Truth be told, I thought that the locker room was the -" 

"Bathroom." Jungkook said, finishing his sentence, voice small, and hoarse, "Yeah, I remember."

"I got the idea to write about the underground world and everything it encompasses after seeing the fight," Jimin said, "My boss loved the idea after I pitched it, and he wanted me to write it. The only catch was that I would have to go undercover. I went back to the place that the fight was held only to see it all cleared out. I wanted to talk to someone, anyone! I just needed some information. I pretended to be this frail, breakable person and created this whole sob story about how I wanted to defend myself and I got directed here." 

"Where I took pity on you." Yoongi said, wanting nothing more than to scoff at his soft heart. 

"You and everyone else made me feel like I was a part of the family. The more I got to know you, the more I realised that I too wanted to be a part of this. None of this, as in the gym, the relationships, the way that all of you care about each other, was what I was expecting. I was expecting things like what happened last night between Kang and Jaehwan. I was expecting violence, and drugs, and blood, and so, so much betrayal. But I realised that the only one betraying you, was me." Jimin said, swallowing the ever growing lump in his throat, "Every single time I had to write something down, I got sick to my stomach. I barely spent any time at home just so I could avoid all of the notes, and my laptop. It was a constant reminder of how wrong all of this felt. The day that you got that package from Jaehwan, was the same day I told Taehyung that I wanted to quit, and that I wanted nothing more to do with this story or the Newspaper at all. I couldn't do it." 

No one said anything. Taehyung looked as ashamed as Jimin did. And the rest of them avoided any eye contact, instead just looking everywhere and anywhere else that they could. 

"Nothing I say or do could every justify what I did." Jimin said, before moving to stand in front of Jungkook, speaking only to him now, "But I need you to know that my feelings, are real. Whatever I said, and promised..All of the kisses, all of the time that we spent together; all of that was 100 percent me. My feelings for you are real, and so is my love. I never lied to you about that, not even once. I'm sorry if you don't believe me, but I will keep reminding you, and I will keep apologising to you, and telling you that you're worth so much love, even if that love isn't me. I'm sorry for lying to you, but I never lied about my love for you. And if one day, you can forgive me, and maybe even love me back, I will consider myself the luckiest person ever. And no matter how long it takes, I will be waiting for you." 

Jungkook couldn't meet his eyes. The cavity in his chest was still aching, and had been growing stronger and stronger ever since he left Jimin's side that afternoon in bed. He knows in his heart that Jimin could never fake those feelings, and he knows in his soul that Jimin loves him just as much as he does Jimin. But he couldn't get over the lies, or the betrayal. It hurt him. 

Could he ever trust something that Jimin says ever again? 

"Are you done?" Jin asked Jimin, leaning forward. 

"Yeah..." Jimin said, voice barely above a whisper, a wave of cold fear crawling down his spine that they would never forgive him.

"We need to work on a plan." Jin said, clearing his throat, "We have to meet Kang by the Pier day after tomorrow."

"They can stay." Was all Jungkook said before getting up and walking into Yoongi's office. 

 

~~~

 

"What are you doing out here, kid?" Yoongi asked, walking onto the rooftop with a shiver as a result of the cool breeze, closing the door behind him.

"Thinking." Jungkook replied, holding the can of beer in his hand a little more tightly. 

"What about?"

"Life, really," Jungkook said, taking a big gulp of the amber liquid. 

Yoongi grabbed a can from the pack on the floor beside Jungkook's foot and leaned against the metal railing. 

"It's been a tough week, huh?" Yoongi said, looking out at the concrete jungle. 

"Tough would be an understatement." 

"Ready for tomorrow night?" He asked the younger boy. 

Jungkook chose not to respond, but instead downed the remainder of his beer, ignoring the burn of his throat and the bitter aftertaste. He leaned down and got another can from the pack, cracking it open with a hiss. 

"I guess I got my answer," Yoongi muttered with a little smile. 

A beat of silence passed through them as they contemplated on their own thoughts. 

"It's over, isn't it, Yoongi?" Jungkook asked, unable to meet his eyes. 

"What is?" 

"This." Jungkook answered, "The gang, the gym, the family..." 

"And Jimin?" Yoongi finished, "Is that what you wanted to say?"

"It's complicated." 

"Everything is if you think about it," Yoongi told him. "Relationships more so, because we have to work on them. Relationships aren't like gangs, Kook. They aren't easy. And they don't break because of one little mistake. In gangs, with one betrayal, the person is gone. Bang! We kill them like they mean nothing, and we don't let ourselves get attached. We've seen it happen one too many times, but relationships aren't like that. It's a give and take situation. We make mistakes and we fall, but we pick ourselves back up and keep going. Sometimes you can't give your 100 percent. Sometimes you can only give 10, or 20 percent, and the other person will make up for the rest." 

"What are you trying to say, Yoongi?" Jungkook sighed, the tired feeling in his bones returning. 

"What I'm trying to say is that, one mistake doesn't mean that your relationship has hit a dead end," Yoongi told him, "If one mistake ended relationships, Hobi and I would have been broken up a long, long time ago. And so would Jin and Namjoon." 

"You and Hoseok are perfect," Jungkook muttered. 

"He tried to run away last night, you know?" Yoongi said. 

"What?!" 

"He was scared," Yoongi said, "And so, he tried to run away, but I found him. We talked about it for a long time. But what I'm trying to say is that, if I had let that one lapse of judgment define everything, we would have been done, right there and then. And that's just one mistake..Can you imagine if we had given up on each other after one mistake? We wouldn't have even lasted three days."

Jungkook said nothing. He just took another sip of his beer, and avoided eye contact.

"You and I both know that the only reason you haven't forgiven him yet is because you're scared."

"I'm JK, I don't get scared!" Jungkook said, emotionless, not believing his own words.

"Want to know a secret, kid?" Yoongi said, "I get scared too. I was terrified last night, and I'm terrified right now." 

Jungkook looked at him for the first time that night, "You? Get scared? I don't believe it." 

"I really am, Kook," Yoongi said, sincerely, "I don't know what's going to happen tomorrow night, neither do I know if our plan to get the gang back is going to work. But I do know that I trust you, and everyone else in the gang immensely. And whatever happens, finding the 6 of you was the best thing that could ever happen to me." 

"D-Do you trust Jimin too?" Jungkook asked, carefully, as if it was a forbidden question. 

"I do." Yoongi said with a smile. 

"Do you think I should forgive him?" Jungkook asked. 

"I think that you should at least think about what he said and why he did what he did." Yoongi said, putting a reassuring arm around Jungkook's shoulder. 

"Yoongi?" Jungkook said.

"Yeah, kid?" 

"Thank you for always being there when I need you," Jungkook said with a soft, almost boy-ish like smile, "And thank you for always being there for me since I was 15." 

"Whatever happens tomorrow, Kook," Yoongi said, "I'm proud of you. And I love you, kid."

 

~~~

 

The first part of the plan was simple - Get to the Pier. 

Hoseok, Yoongi and Taehyung were together in one car, Namjoon and Jin in another and finally, Jimin and Jungkook in the last car. All the cars has extra guns and weapons if needed, but the members of the gang were already carrying two each, and the other three were carrying knives. Simple yet deadly when used, and it had the extra benefit of them not harming themselves. 

Namjoon and Jin left early. Jin told them that he had to do something before even thinking about getting to the Pier. The gang was first and foremost a family, and families don't leave their members in the dark. 

They were off to the dorms, to talk to the rest of the members, or as many as he could find that day. 

"Are you nervous?" Namjoon asked him as soon as Jin parked the car. 

"Is it that obvious?" Jin said as he turned the key to turn the ignition off. 

"Only to me." Namjoon said with a comforting smile, putting his hand over Jin's and taking the key out. 

Jin leaned back with a sigh, shutting his eyes for a minute, "What am I going to say to them, Joon? How am I supposed to explain all of this?" 

"With the truth." 

"The truth is that I made a bad gamble and lost everything." Jin said, a bitter laugh, tumbling from his lips, eyes watering with tears that he didn't dare to shed.

"The truth," Namjoon corrected, "Is that you did what you thought was right, and you're still doing what you think is right. The position that you're in doesn't come with self help books, Jin. You became the leader when you were just a kid, and look at you now! You've always put the gang first, even before yourself. And you're still doing that. You don't treat them like they're your servants; you treat them like family. What else could they ask for in a leader?" 

"They could ask for someone who wouldn't place his entire gang as a betting chip." Jin answered. 

"You're not giving them up without a fight, baby," Namjoon said, cupping Jin's cheek, making him look Namjoon straight in the eye, "You haven't lost Jin, so don't give up. You're going to win this. The plan is going to work." 

"I hope you're right," Jin said with a sigh.

"Do you want me to stay in the car?" Namjoon asked with a dimpled, comforting smile. 

"I need you with me," Jin told him. 

"I'm not leaving." Namjoon said, "Not now. Not ever." 

Jin took his hand in his and squeezed once, an action of gratitude. 

They got out of the car and entered the dorms, greeting everyone before gathering them in the living room. 

"I'm sure you guys have a lot of questions," Jin started, "And I'm here to answer every one of them. Let's start with the basics - Yes, it's true that the Unbeatable JK lost a fight. And it's also true that the winner of the fight, gets the other gang." 

"Get's the other.." 
"We're Jaehwan's now?"
"What do you-" 

Jin could hear mumbles and whispers getting louder and louder. 

"Jaehwan isn't getting this gang. He's not getting ours." Jin said, "And that's beca-" 

"He's dead." One of the members said, cutting Jin off, "Kang killed him in the gym." 

"Yeah..." Was all Jin could reply. 

A beat of silence passed through the room, tense, filled with fear. 

"Kang isn't getting this gang without a fight." Jin told them, "I'm not letting this family of ours go. He can pry it out of my cold, dead hands if he wants it. This is, and forever will be our family. And no one gets to take that away from me. But I can't do this alone. I can't fight without you guys. I'm also not going to force you to fight. Whatever happens tonight, I want this to be a choice that you make and not a choice that I force you to. If you want to leave, I won't stop you. I can promise you that no harm will come to you from me or from anyone else in this family if you decide to walk out that door tonight. I will bid you farewell with a hug and a good luck. But if you stay, I'm going to ask you to fight beside me. Fight for our family beside me."

Jin looked at Namjoon and nodded, signalling for him to open the door.

"The choice is yours." 

 

~~~

 

Jungkook was wordlessly driving the car, both hands tight on the steering wheel, eyes trained forward. Jimin kept glancing over at Jungkook, wanting so badly to say something, but not knowing how to say it. So he didn't. He kept silent, choosing to gaze out the window instead.

This might very well be the last night of both their lives and yet, neither of them knew what to say.

Fear became them. 

Jimin was afraid that Jungkook wouldn't believe the words that he wanted to say. He was afraid that Jungkook would hate him. He was afraid that he had screwed up his one and only chance at love. But most of all, he was terrified that Jungkook wouldn't make it through the night. It was a horrible thought, and he knew that. But he also knew that Jungkook dying was his top fear, and it always has been his fear ever since the day that he first met him. This job that Jungkook was in was a dangerous one; Jimin has seen that first hand, he experienced it first hand. He's seen Jungkook get hurt one too many times. And every single time, his heart broke more and more. Regardless of whatever decision Jungkook makes about him, Jimin just wants him to come back from tonight. That's all he wanted. 

Jungkook on the other hand was overthinking. Truth be told, he was blaming himself. He got Jimin involved in this world, and now it was too late to take him out. If Jungkook had his way, Jimin wouldn't be in the car with him. Jimin would be at home safe and sound. But he wasn't. Instead he was here, next to Jungkook on the way to what just might be their gallows. He couldn't control the future, but he sure as hell could make sure that Jimin has one. Whatever happens tonight, Jungkook was going to do his damn best to make sure that Jimin got out of there alive. Even if that meant sacrificing himself for it. The reason for it was simple - Jimin had his heart and soul. He loved him. He loves him.

Jungkook pulled the car over, leaning back against the seat, mentally preparing himself for the worst case scenarios. 

"Are you scared?" Were the first words out of Jimin's mouth. 

"Aren't you?" Jungkook asked softly. 

I'm more scared about losing you. Jimin wanted to say. But he didn't need to. He was sure that Jungkook knew. 

They sat in silence, needing those couple of minutes to just be. They didn't want to pretend, nor did they want to walk on eggshells. Tonight wasn't like any of the other nights. The other nights didn't have the looming cloud of death trailing them, following their every move, waiting in the shadows. 

"Do you remember your promise to me, Jimin?" Jungkook said, more than he asked. 

"Which one?" 

"The one where you promised me that you would run, and you would keep running if anything were to happen?" Jungkook told him. 

"Kook, I'm not goin-" 

"You promised Jimin." Jungkook asserted, trying to keep his voice from wavering. 

"I've broken my promises before, haven't I?" Jimin said, a small smile on his face, pang going through his heart.

Jungkook leaned his head back on his seat, shutting his eyes, not knowing what else he could do to keep Jimin safe.

"Jungkook..." 

"I just don't want you to get hurt, Jiminie." Jungkook said, the dim street lights illuminating the surroundings around them, hiding Jungkook's face from Jimin. 

"If tonight is our last night-" 

"Don't say that." Jungkook begged, voice breaking in between, "Please, Jimin. Don't." 

Jimin reached over the seat and took Jungkook's hand in his, placing it on his cheek, leaning into the warmth of Jungkook's palm.

"Through thick and thin," Jimin said. 

"And everything in between." Jungkook finished, shutting his eyes. 

Jimin gasped softly, not expecting Jungkook to finish the quote. 

He couldn't help himself as he leaned over into Jungkook's seat, hands grabbing his cheeks as he crashed his lips down onto Jungkook's lips. They moved feverishly, needily. It was as if their lips needed to memorise each other's again, like they would never kiss again. It was a goodbye kiss and they both knew it, yet neither one of them wanted to say anything. They needed this more than anything. They needed reassurance, and comfort, and a way to say that they loved each other without actually saying it. A way to say that they were terrified, and scared, and to voice their fears to each other. A way to be together....It was everything they needed and more. 

Jungkook pulled away first, resting his forehead against Jimin's, eyes still closed from the kiss, chest heaving up and down, one hand on Jimin's neck and the other on his cheek. 

Safe. Warm. Safe. Warm. Safe. Warm. Sa-

"Come home to me." Jimin whispered into the night, "Whatever happens tonight, please, Jungkook, please just come home." 

"Through thick and thin.." Jungkook said, opening his honey brown eyes to look into Jimin's, needing this anchor. 

"And everything in between."

 

 

 

Chapter Text

"Area's clear." Hoseok reported to Yoongi, holding a gun in his right hand as he continued to scan the area. The one thing he's learnt from all these years of running is that nothing is as it seems. There are always going to be threats hiding in plain sight. He could never be too safe.

"Clear here too." Yoongi said with a curt nod, as if he didn't believe it himself. 

Kang was a sneaky asshole. He wouldn't ask to meet at the Pier and not have any protection. The only problem was finding them. 

"Isn't that a good thing?" Taehyung asked, unsure. 

"I don't trust it." Hoseok said with a shake of his head. 

"Neither do I," Yoongi told him, "There's something slimy about Kang...We're missing something." 

"You don't think that there's someone hiding in the gang or something, do you?" Taehyung asked, biting his lip, scared. 

"No." Hoseok said, shaking his head, "Definitely not between the seven of us." 

"Not even me?" Taehyung asked, hesitant. 

Yoongi cocked his head slightly, finally understand why Taehyung has been acting weird the last couple of days. 

"Tae, look at me," Yoongi said, putting one hand on his shoulder, reassuringly. 

Taehyung refused to look up. 

"Come on TaeTae, it's just us here," Hoseok said, with a smile on his face, "Look at us." 

He took a deep breath and lifted his head, finally looking at the two of them who had adoration in their eyes and a small smile on their face. Even in the midst of all of this, they wanted nothing more than for Taehyung to be listened to and heard.

Family. That's what they were.

"We trust you, Tae," Yoongi said, "Sure, we may be mad at you and we may fight about it but that doesn't mean that we trust you any less. You wouldn't be here if we didn't. We wouldn't have brought you here, nor would we have trained you, or even let you stay at the gym if we didn't trust you. What happened with Jimin and you broke our hearts but still, we forgave you. I'm not saying that we aren't going to talk about this after tonight. But I am saying that no matter what happens, we aren't going to just up and leave you here." 

"We're still a family, Taehyung," Hoseok continued, "And families fight. But we don't give up on each other."

Yoongi intertwined his fingers with Hoseok, smiling up at him, "Nor do we run away." 

"We stick together and we figure it out." Hoseok said with a nod, looking back at Taehyung, "We're going to figure this out. Together. As a family." 

"You-You still think of me as family..." Taehyung said, trailing off, as if he didn't believe it. Family to him was a foreign word. One that was akin to Fairies and Mermaids. It didn't exist to him in real life. It was always something that he read about in books, and saw in the movies, always imagining what it would be like to actually have one. He'd indulged in the fantasy of having a family at the gym, in the back of his mind knowing that one day, this will all have to end. He has just never expected for it to actually become a reality. 

"We always have and always will think of you as family, Taehyung." Yoongi said.

"You're like our little brother." Hoseok said, smiling. 

It takes a couple of seconds for the words to truly sink in. It was like the words spoken were taking a journey. It came out of Hoseok's mouth, travelling to Taehyung's ears and then to his brain and straight through his veins, right into his heart, warming up every inch of skin.

"I have a family." Taehyung whispered it to himself, the words feeling heavy and foreign on his tongue, "I have a family..." 

 

~~~

 

Each step that they took was smaller than the last. With each step, the gravity of the situation weighed heavier and heavier on them. This was it. This could their very last night. The threat loomed over them like a dark cloud, wisps of smoke trailing behind them, filling up the space that they occupied together. 

"Jungkook." Jimin finally called out, unable to hold it in any longer. 

Jungkook turned around, expectant. As if he was waiting all along for Jimin to say something.

Jimin stalked over to him, ignoring the heavy thump of his beating heart, and wrapped his arms around Jungkook's waist. Jungkook blinked blankly, his brain taking a while to catch up with reality. Jimin didn't care, he just hugged him tighter, nuzzling his face into Jungkook's warm chest, the cold night suddenly not existing anymore. 

"Whatever happens tonight," Jimin breathed out, pulling away from his chest, arms still tightly wrapped around his waist, "I can't let you go in there without letting you know how much you mean to me." 

Jungkook snaked his arms around Jimin, putting his pride aside. He didn't want his last interaction with Jimin to be one filled with pride. They could figure their relationship out later. What didn't need figuring out was the fact that they were madly in love with each other. They stuck together through everything. They were standing here, together, in what could just be their last moments of peace, when they could have just run away and been happy without this gang war. 

Jimin could have left at any moment. He didn't have to be here. He didn't have to still care. He could have written his article and gotten millions of dollars and fame, and even his name on the door. But he didn't. And he wasn't. He was right here, right where he needed to be. Whatever happened in the past led him to this moment with Jungkook. His past led him to his future. Jungkook. Jungkook was his future. Even if that future was 50 years from now, months from now, or hell, even just for a couple more hours...Jimin didn't regret anything. 

He loved him. He loved him more than anything. And that scared him. Tonight, when his focus was supposed to be on Kang and everyone else, trying to stick to the plan and protect his family, he was scared that his eyes would keep drifting to Jimin. He was scared that something would happen to him and Jungkook wouldn't be there to protect him like he promised he would. He didn't know how he would live with himself if Jimin got hurt. 

"We have to go," Jungkook whispered into Jimin's hair, hugging him tighter to his body, not wanting to go. Not wanting to let him go. 

"Sixty seconds." Jimin said, "Please." 

"Jiminie..." 

"Fourty." Jimin mumbled into his shirt, taking in the warmth, taking in the smell of Jungkook and how his arms just felt like home. He felt safe. Safer than ever before. 

"I love you," Jungkook said into his hair, pulling Jimin away to place a kiss on his forehead. 

Jimin closed his eyes and savoured the warmth of is plump lips on his kiss as if it was the last one he would ever get. 

"Come home tonight," Jimin told him. 

"You're my home." Jungkook told him, "Wherever you go tonight, I'll be right there." 

"I love you, Jeon Jungkook," Jimin said, fear bubbling up inside him, knowing that this was the last couple of seconds that they had together. 

"Through thick and thin..." Jungkook said, leaning down and slotting his lips over Jimin's.

"And everything in between." Jimin said as he pulled away. 

Jungkook took his hand, intertwining their fingers together as they walked into their own battlefield. 

Memories of the last Fight-Night creeped its way into Jimin's head. Images of Jungkook bleeding on the floor, bruised and battered, chest heaving. The sounds of skin slapping skin, Yoongi screaming at the top of his lungs for Jungkook to get off the floor and fight. The feeling of desperation for someone, anyone to do something and just save Jungkook from the ring. The-

"What are you thinking about?" Jungkook asked him. 

"Last time we were here it was for your fight..." Jimin said, trailing off, knowing that he didn't have to say much more. 

"Are you scared?" 

"I don't want you to get hurt," Jimin said. 

"What about you? Aren't you scared for yourself?" Jungkook asked him, glancing over to Jimin. 

"I'm armed," Jimin said, taking out his knife and waving it around, "They should be scared of me." 

"My little firecracker," Jungkook said with a laugh. 

They continued to walk, watching the Pier numbers get higher and higher, knowing their walk was getting shorter and shorter and about to come to an end. 

"When we get out of this," Jimin said, chest constricting, "Can we talk? About us?" 

Jungkook just nodded, not knowing what else to say. 

Jimin squeezed Jungkook's hand once, reminding him that he was always there before pulling his hand away. He saw Taehyung at a distance and shot a smile to Jungkook before walking to join Taehyung. 

"If I get out of this alive.." Jungkook whispered into the night, watching the pink haired boy saunter away to Taehyung, "We can talk about us." 

 

~~~

 

"Kang's going to be here any minute and Jin still isn't here! There are 5 of us! Can you imagine if Kang showed up right now? We'd look like fucking losers!" Hoseok hissed out, eyes glancing everywhere, paranoia and fear creeping up on him like the breeze of a cold wind. 

"Make him monologue." Jimin suggested, shrugging his shoulders, "That way it would inflate his ego and when Jin comes, we'd have the upper hand."

"What?" Yoongi asked, cocking his eyebrow. 

"Everyone loves talking about themselves," Jimin said, "So, make him monologue. I'm sure that he would be more than happy to talk about how he's so powerful now and blah blah blah, and how Jaehwan could never do what he did and how he's going to own the gang and our asses, and basically stupid shit like that."

"He's got a point..." Taehyung said with a nod, impressed with the idea. 

"Fine, that can be plan B." Hoseok grunted out. 

"What's plan A?" Jimin asked. 

"Shoot to kill." 

"No." Yoongi said immediately. 

"But-" Hoseok started but Yoongi just shot him a look and he mumbled curses under his breath. 

"As much as I would love to put a bullet in the middle of that asshole's forehead, we don't know what he has planned, or how many people he's bringing with him, or whether-" 

"Fine, I get it." Hoseok said, "No shooting." 

"No shooting yet." Yoongi said, squeezing his arm. 

Hoseok looked at Yoongi, communicating with just his eyes. They knew what they wanted to say to each other. It wasn't anything that needed to be said out loud. One look said more than enough. With just one look they shared their fears, their love, their want to be next to each other, their hopes that they would both make it out of this tonight. One way or another, they were okay where they were. 

With a nod and a rub of Yoongi's thumb on Hoseok's bare skin of his arm, Hoseok felt much better. That was all he really needed. 

"Uh, guys..." Taehyung said, voice shaky, eyes doubling in size, "I think they're here."

Immediately, Jungkook stepped forward, pushing Jimin behind him. 

"Stay behind me." Jungkook said, already moving to the imaginary frontlines. 

This was it. 

Jimin stood firm in his ground, trying to pretend like his legs wasn't shaking. He could feel the knife tucked into the waistband of his jeans, the pointed tip making small scratches in his skin. 

He watched as Kang, backed up by about 50 odd people, walked to where they were stood, meeting them halfway with a cocky grin on his face as though he knew they were no match for him. 

"Well, well, well," Kang said, gun hanging off his finger just like the night he shot Jaehwan, "If it isn't my favourite shitty gang." 

Hoseok clenched his fist tight, biting his tongue to avoid saying anything. He had to stick with the plan. 

"What is it? Cat got your tongue?" Kang said with a smirk, "Or do you just not have a voice without your pathetic, weak little shit you call a leader?" 

"Now, I know you're not talking about me." Jin said walking up to the front, gun tucked in the waistband of his jeans, shiny metal surface reflecting the moonlight. 

Jimin looked back, hoping to see other people besides just Namjoon and Jin. But there were none...It was just the 7 of them against the troughs of people that Kang brought. And for the first time that night, Jimin was losing hope. 

JIn saw Kang's shocked expression, and smirked. There was a part of Kang that thought that he wouldn't show up and Jin could use that to his advantage. 

"What is it, Kang? Cat got your tongue?" Jin said, mocking him, using his words against him. 

Kang quickly composed himself, as if the little slip up never happened in the first place, "Glad you could join us. Thought you weren't coming."

"You know me," Jin said with a smirk, "I like to make an entrance."

Jin's eyes scanned the crowd, trying to both work out in his head whether his strategy would actually work and also trying to see if he could find Roscoe. He didn't want to hurt the kid, he just wanted to talk to him and see why he did what he did and where exactly Jin went wrong. He understood; Jin really did. He was once a lost and impressionable teenager too. He too knew how beautiful words were and how easily one could just just sway to the beat and play into someone's hands. He also knew how cruel this world was and how easy it was to trust someone. More than just that, Jin wanted to show everyone, especially now, just how important family was; and how the Kim Clan was, first and foremost, a family, more than it was a gang. 

"What is it, Jin?" Kang said, quickly catching on, "Looking for something? Or should I say...someone?" 

"Where is he?" Jin punctuated, not wasting anytime. 

"Why, who ever do you mean?" Kang said, voice sweet and mockingly deceptive. 

"Roscoe." Jin said, biting his tongue to keep the curses from pouring out of him, "Where is he? Where's Roscoe?"

Kang smirked, twirling his gun around his index finger looking prouder and prouder of himself. 

"Where the fuck is he, Kang?" Jin spat out, already knowing the answer but wanting Kang to say it, needing that fire in his belly stoked. 

"Finally figured it out, did you, Jin?" Kang said, teasing him. 

"Shut the fuck up," Yoongi spat out, taking a step but Jin stopped him with a gentle hold of his forearm. 

"Took you a long while to figure it out though," Kang said with an exaggerated sigh, "I'm disappointed in you." 

Jin scoffed, "You actually want me to believe that you planned all of that and not Jaehwan?"

Jimin tried not to let his confusion show on his face. What was Jin doing? Back in the gym while they were talking, it was more and more obvious that Jaehwan didn't plan anything and that the mastermind was Kang all along. 

Kang's face fell, and the gun stopped twirling. Darkness seeped through into Kang's eyes.

Jimin clutched the back of Jungkook's shirt, needing to feel that little bit of safety even if he knew that he wasn't actually safe. Jungkook leaned back a little, letting Jimin know that he was right there with him. It was a gesture to tell Jimin that he was safe, and no matter the circumstances, he would always be safe with him. 

"You think," Kang seethed, visibly getting angrier and angrier, "That fucking Jaehwan, the fucking prick, was the mastermind behind all of this?! You actually think that that fucking dumbass, who didn't think getting into the drugs business in the first place, just like his fucking father, could have done all of this?! If it wasn't for me, Jaehwan's father would still be alive and so would Jaehwan."

"What?" Jin said, trying not to let the surprise show in his voice.

"Jaehwan was fucking nothing when I met him and neither was his father. If it wasn't for me who planted the seed in Jaehwan's brain for the drug business, he would have never pitched it to his father. After that whole fight with his father, Jaehwan came back to me, fucking crying like a pussy ass bitch about how his father never listens to him and all of that bullshit. I kept telling Jaehwan how he would be a way better leader than his father...But it was too bad that his father was still alive. And then I left, and coincidentally, my gun was left on the bed, right beside Jaehwan..." Kang said, his proud smirk returning to his face as he took in their shocked expressions. 

"Jaehwan killed his father." Jin gasped out. 

"You made Jaehwan kill his father." Yoongi said. 

"You think Jaehwan got all of those ideas for himself after? Hell to the fucking no! It was all me!" Kang scoffed out, "From breaking the treaty, to changing the fight list to remove JK and get that cotton candied bitch that he's so into on the damn list. Hell, I even selected the fighters that day. I did everything and Jaehwan just took the credit. I had to keep up my stupid little scared bitch act and pretend like I was so scared of him when in reality I kept planting seeds in his head and giving him ideas. He was never running the show. I was. All of this, yeah, it's all me." 

"You were hiding behind him like a little bitch," Jin taunted, "None of this is yours. You don't deserve shit." 

"If it wasn't for me, Jaehwan would have never gotten to where he is." 

"He's dead." Yoongi deadpanned. 

"And so is Roscoe." Kang grinned. 

"Roscoe was only a child-" Jin started to scream, his blood boiling. 

"A stupid child." Kang scoffed, "He had potential but he was careless." 

"What did he do to deserve a fucking bullet put in him?" Hoseok asked, seething. 

"Thought I was Jaehwan." 

"You fucking son of a bit-" Jin said, lunging forward, anger taking over every inch of his skin.

Yoongi pulled him back, containing him to his spot. 

"I didn't know you cared so much about your little failure you call a gang, Jin." Kang said with a mocking laugh. 

"You see a gang. I see family." 

Kang rolled his eyes, scoffing at the sentiment, "You're weak." 

"Am I?" Jin said, cocking an eyebrow. 

"There are only 7 of you against all of us." Kang boasted, playing with the gun in his hand, "Give it up, Jin. You're never going to win." 

Jin smirked, knowing that he had the upper hand, "Sure, Kang. There are only 7 of us that you can see." 

"What?" Kang said, nearly dropping his gun. 

"You didn't really think that I would show up alone, now did you?" Jin said, smirking as he added fire to the fuel, "Jaehwan would have never made this mistake." 

Kang growled, anger flashing in his already dark eyes. He took a deep breath and said, "Either hand everything over quietly or-"

"Or what, huh, Kang?" Jin scoffed, "You going to kill me the way you did Jaehwan? You going to put a bullet in me?" 

Jin stepped forward, dropping his gun on the floor and stood there, "Shoot me."

Kang didn't move. 

Namjoon couldn't feel his legs. He held his breath, clenching and unclenching his hands into fists. He had to keep reminding himself that this was all part of Jin's plan and that everything was going to be okay. He had to remind himself of Jin's lips capturing his in a searing kiss in the car just before they exited to meet their fate. He had to remind himself of the soft words spoken into the night air, and the bubble that they created for themselves. He had to remind himself of how safe he felt with Jin and how Jin explained to him what his plans were. He had to remind himself that Jin knew what he was doing. Even if it scared Namjoon to death. 

"Fucking shoot me you coward!" Jin screamed at Kang who was frozen in his spot.

Kang shook his head, quickly getting out of his surprised state. Confusion showed on his face briefly before he composed himself. 

"Any last words?" Kang asked, finger on the trigger, gun still lowered. 

Jin just smiled at him, calm, cool and collected as he stood there, waiting. 

Kang raised his right arm, gun in hand, finger on the trigger as he pointed it straight at Jin. He cocked the gun and started to put pressure on the trigger. 

A loud shot rang around the Pier followed by a slight scream and then a hiss of pain and a thud of something to the ground.

Namjoon felt his breath hitch, eyes watering with tears that blurred his vision. He blinked them away and prayed to a million Gods from every religion that he could think of, despite being an Atheist. He prayed and prayed that when the tears disappeared and his vision cleared up, that he wouldn't see Jin on the floor, bleeding out and dying. 

He blinks back the tears, wishing them away; needing to see that Jin was alright. He needed that reassurance more than anything. Those few seconds can easily be said to be the scariest moments of his life. Namjoon takes a deep breath, willing himself to open his eyes. 

Right there, in front of him, solid and firmly on the ground was Seokjin. Safe. He was safe. There was no blood on him. He was standing there, in front of Kang with a cocky smile on his face and exuding confidence. 

Namjoon felt like he could breathe again. 

"Didn't think I would come alone, now did you, Kang?" Jin said, knowing that he had about 30 odd people waiting in the sidelines for his orders.

"You fuckin-" Kang started to swear, clutching his hand in his other hand, hissing in pain, his gun on the floor in front of him. 

"Take another step forward and I swear to god I'll have my men shoot you like they did your gun." Jin threatened, venom lacing his every syllable.

Kang clutched his hand tighter, cursing under his breath as he tried to formulate a plan in his mind. 

"Here's how it's going to go," Jin told him, taking a step forward, commanding his attention along with the attention of everyone else on the Pier, "Either you leave and promise to leave my gang and me alone, or I kill you and take your entire gang with me." 

"I'd take option three." Kang said, "I kill you and take everything you own. Including that little slut you call a boyfriend. Bet I can make him scream real well." 

"Fuck it." Jin swore under his breath and lunged at Kang, knocking him into the ground as he pummelled him with his fist. 

The rest of the men took this as a sign to start fighting. Jungkook charged first to the other side, running at full speed and punching the first person he saw, hard, across the jaw before moving on to the next. 

Jimin couldn't see past all the movement. It was like one second, Jin was standing in front of Kang and the next everyone was fighting. He could see Namjoon punching someone to his right, and Jungkook going up against two people at once. He saw Hoseok shoot two people in the leg while Yoongi punched one person in the nose and kicked someone in the shin before elbowing him and then punch him, making him clutch his nose as he fell to the ground before Yoongi moved onto the next. Jin was still on Kang, punching and hitting every inch of skin that he could reach. 

"Watch out, Jimin!" Jimin heard before he was being pulled to one side and heard a grunt come out of someone followed by a loud scream and a squelch. 

Jimin turned around and saw Taehyung pulling a knife out of someone's skin before pushing him away.

"What the-" 

"What are you doing, Jimin? Why aren't you paying attention?! What are you looking at that's more important than your safety right now?!" Taehyung screamed at him, feeling the adrenaline coursing through his veins.

"H-How do you just d-do that, Tae?" Jimin asked. 

"They're here solely to hurt us, Jimin. We have to remember that." Taehyung said, looking all around him for potential threats, "Look, in no way am I going to kill someone! But I can slow them down or fuck, I don't know! I'm scared, okay?! I'm fucking terrified! I don't want to die and neither do I want any of my family to die! This is my family and I have to protect them. No one is going to fucking die today! Not if I can help it." 

Jimin nodded, hearing the words but not fully absorbing them. All he could hear were grunts and screams of pain and gun shots. He was terrified. 

"Fucking snap out of it!" Taehyung yelled in his face, shaking Jimin, "You can't just stand here and do nothing, Jimin! You're making yourself an open fucking target! Either fight alongside us or leave." 

And just like that it was like a switch went off in Jimin's brain. He wasn't this weak, fragile, breakable thing. He trained for hours and hours alongside two of the best fighters in the entire country - Yoongi and Jungkook. This was his  family as well. These people needed him. They didn't need this character that Jimin made up the first time that he met them. They needed the person that he was today. Sure, he may not be the best fighter but he would be damned if he just stood here and did nothing. 

Jimin reached into the waistband of his jeans and got out the knife that he put in there for protection. With the fire stoked in his belly, and a fighting spirit running through him, he looked at Taehyung and nodded. They were going to do this together. They were going to fight for their family. 

Kang pushed Jin off of him, tasting the metal and the blood in his mouth. Jin just smirked, chest heaving from the sheer exertion of strength. 

"Ready to give up, you sick fuck?" Jin spat out. 

"Over my dead body." Kang said through gritted teeth. 

"That can be arranged." Jin said before lunging forward. 

Jungkook dodged the punch, bending forward before kicking the man in the stomach, hearing him grunt, instinctively crouching down. Jungkook took that opportunity and elbowed him in the back, and then used his knee to break the man's nose. And for good measure, he kneed him in the face again before pushing him to the ground. He turned around and saw another man coming for him. All he did was smirk, knowing that he would win this one again.

Hoseok struggled against the man's chokehold, scratching at his forearm, drawing out blood. But the man did nothing but choke him tighter. Hoseok couldn't even reach for the gun that he had dropped and he was running out of oxygen. He could barely move. 

"Hobi!" He heard before he felt something hot whiz past him. 

"Fuck." The man grunted, pulling his arm away from him instinctively, the bullet lodging itself in there, deep. 

Hoseok dropped to the ground, eyes welling with tears as he sucked in wet, greedy breaths, trying to fill his lungs with air again. He could faintly feel someone patting his back, and if he concentrated hard enough, he could hear words being directed at him. 

"You're okay baby. Breathe, Hobi. I'm right here. No one is going to hurt you, Hoseok. Breathe, baby, breathe." Yoongi said, patting his back, stroking it lovingly. He looked up, then to his left, and to his right, checking for signs of danger anywhere and everywhere. He had a loaded gun and wasn't afraid to use it to anyone who even posed the slightest amount of danger. 

"Sh-it." Hoseok managed to cough out, getting air back into his system as he slumped to the ground.

"You good?" Yoongi asked. 

"Fuck, I forgot what it was like to be strangled like that," Hoseok managed to croak out, hoarsely, throat feeling like sandpaper. 

"You're usually the one choking me," Yoongi laughed out. 

"God, it's fucked up how we can joke about this while in the middle of a literal battlefield," Hoseok said, coughing in the middle of his sentence, trying to pull himself up. 

"I'm the one with the gun here," Yoongi said, looking around again, "No one's going to come for us." 

Hoseok leaned down to pick his gun up, not giving himself a chance to rest. He cocked it and nodded at Yoongi. 

"You sure you're okay?" Yoongi asked again, not really trusting him. 

"You're there, aren't you?" Hoseok said with a smile, "What do I have to be afraid of?" 

"See you on the other side?" Yoongi said with a grin, gun in hand. 

Hoseok cocked his gun, "On the other side." 

Namjoon fell to the ground with a grunt, feeling the wind being knocked out of him. He brought his hands up to protect his face, eyes shut tight as he felt the fists coming into contact with his skin again and again and again. He couldn't help but let out hisses and whines of pain. He felt them stop and couldn't help but open his eyes to see why. The man above him grinned dark, low, and threateningly. Namjoon felt fear prick every pore of his skin. The man whipped out a knife and pulled it back, ready to push it down. Namjoon stuck his hands out, trying to stop him any way that he could. He pushed against the two hands that were pressing, attempting to hurt and maim him. He was running out of strength. At this point, Namjoon was holding his breath, feeling his hands give way, the other man's brute force overpowering Namjoon. He was about to concede defeat and just accept whatever fate had in store with him when suddenly he felt the man being pulled off of him and pushed onto the ground. The knife flew to one side and the man was being pummelled. 

Namjoon sat up, a wave of relief washing over him like a warm shower on a cold day. He turned to his right and saw Jin punching the man tirelessly, releasing whatever built up anger he had. Jin stopped, reaching over for the knife when Namjoon shot up, pulling his arm away. 

"Jin, stop." Namjoon said, holding his elbow, "I'm okay. Please, Jin. Stop." 

"Consider yourself fucking lucky asshole!" Jin shouted down at the now bleeding man, "If it wasn't for him I'd be gutting you out like a fish, one by one, making you watch your insides come out." 

Jin stood up, grabbing Namjoon by the wrist and pulling him to one side, checking for any cuts and/or bruises. 

"I'm okay, Jin. I'm okay. I'm not hurt." Namjoon kept reassuring him, taking his time to look over Jin as well. 

Jin cupped his cheek, rubbing this thumb over the soft, sweaty skin, "It's almost over, Joon." 

Namjoon nodded. 

"We're going to be okay. Plan A is working." Jin reassured. 

"Where's Kang?" Namjoon asked, looking around both at the people who were fighting and the ones on the ground. 

"I don't know." Jin admitted, "One second I was fighting him and the next I saw you on the ground and I just rushed over." 

"I don't want to be the reason that-" 

Jin shook his head, "If anything, you're the only reason I'm still standing here, alive. I wouldn't be here without you." 

Namjoon nodded, looking around at the destruction that was the Pier. 

"We're almost there, Joon. Almost at our happily ever after." Jin reassured, squeezing his hand, wanting nothing more than to take him into his arms, but he couldn't. Danger was everywhere and Namjoon's safety was his number one priority. 

"Happily ever after." Namjoon said to himself, needing that reassurance that everything was going to be okay. 

"Come on." Jin said, taking his hand in one hand and cocking his gun with the other.

Jimin was panting, his chest heaving up and down as he dodged the punch coming from the man above him. 

He used this opportunity to hit the man in the stomach, watching him double over in pain. 

Yoongi's words were running through his head as he moved, You're small, Jimin. Just like me. People are going to profile you. They're going to take one look at you and immediately underestimate you. Now, you can do one of two things. You can either sulk and sob and do everything you can to not look like this. Or, you can use this to your advantage. Work with it. Extort it. Use this goody-two-shoes image against them. Make them regret ever underestimating you in the first place. The only person who creates your narrative is you, Jimin. No one else. They can't hurt you if you turn your weaknesses into your strengths.

Jimin used all of his energy and brought his leg up, kicking the man in the shin, making him topple over. Jimin gripped his knife and brought it down in one swing, hard and fast, on his leg. He watched the man writhe in pain and tried to push the feelings of guilt away. He swallowed down the nausea, reminding himself that this was the only way to protect his family and him right now. He could apologise profusely later, once the war was over. 

He got up, panting, making sure that the man was definitely down for the count. 

He looked around, seeing the destruction and blood that covered the Pier. He checked the bodies on the floor, one by one, hoping and praying that none of them would be someone that he loved. He didn't know what he would do if it was. 

"Jimin!" Taehyung called, beckoning him over. 

"Give it up, Kang." Jin said, standing in his face, finger on the trigger of his already cocked gun, "You've lost. Your men are gone and you're all alone now." 

Kang laughed maniacally, "You think I've lost? You think you won all of this?" 

"You have no one." Jungkook spat out, "We have you surrounded. Just give up before we fucking kill you where you stand." 

Kang looked around, and all he saw was the seven of them, united and ready to attack at any second. 

He brought his gun up, pointing it at Jin, "Let me go or I shoot." 

Immediately, four more guns were pointed at him. 

"Fucking try it." Jungkook spat out, cocking his gun. 

"We dare you." Hoseok gritted out. 

"Fine." Kang said, with a smirk, lowering his gun. 

Jin didn't trust him but nodded for the rest to lower it as well. They were all on guard, as if expecting Kang to pull something.

Just as Jin was about to say something, in a blink of an eye, Kang raised his gun at Jungkook. 

"No!" Jimin screamed out, leaping at Jungkook, pushing both of them to the ground. 

Two consecutive shots were fired and for a second, everyone was frozen at the spot, no one breathing, no one knowing what just happened. 

Jimin lifted his head, hands immediately reaching out to touch Jungkook, to check if he was hurt, if there was blood anywhere that belonged to him. 

"Are you okay?!" Jimin said, hands all over him, knife long forgotten on the cold, bloodied ground somewhere, the adrenaline in his veins lessening.

"Y-You..." 

"What?" He said, confused, looking at Jungkook's expression of mounting horror - His mouth agape, eyes wide and filled with a dark fear that he had never seen before in anyone.

Jimin reached his hand down to where Jungkook was looking, brushing his side and brought it back up to his eyes. Wet. Red. 

"Oh." Was all Jimin managed to say as reality finally hit him, adrenaline worn off completely. 

Just then, his knees give out as he sinks to the hard, cold, ground, his bloodied hand falling limp to his side as he gasps for breath. He feels Jungkook bring him into his arms and all he can think at that moment is - 

Safe. Warm. Safe. Warm. Safe. Warm. Saf-

"Jung-Jungkook." He sputtered out, voice cracking in the middle, a cough escaping him as he tried to suck in as much air as possible, the pain overtaking him in the worst ways possible. But he tried his best to ignore it. He couldn't show that he was in pain. It would kill Jungkook, and he knew that. So, he plastered a smile on his face and tried to look through the film glossing over his eyes in the form of tears, blurring out everything. He wanted his last memories to be of Jungkook. Only of Jungkook.

"Shh. Shh baby. Don't talk." Jungkook said, trying to stay calm, trying to put pressure on the wound. His hands were covered in blood. Blood that wasn't his. Blood that was Jimin's. The warm, wet feeling wasn't new to him and he usually didn't panic. But he was usually in the ring, and the person who was bleeding wasn't the love of his life. 

"Kookie."

"What is it? What is it, Jimin?" Jungkook asked, looking at him and trying to figure out what he could do. He looked away for a second, screaming at the top of his lungs, "Fucking do something! Anything! Call someone! Get help!" 

"Kookie. Lo-Look at me." Jimin said, smile still on his face, his hair matted with sweat, sticking on his forehead, as he gasped for breath, feeling blood trickle down the side of his hip, onto the already bloodied ground beside Jungkook's leg."

Jungkook looked at him, his own eyes welling up with tears, Helplessly, he managed to croak out a soft and broke, "Jimin..." 

"Do you wa-want to hear a fu-fun fact?" Jimin asked him. 

"Jimin now's not the time-"

"Baby porcupines are called porcupettes."

Jungkook smiled. How could he not? How could he sit there and be angry when all Jimin wanted to do all he ever wanted to do was to make other people smile. IT was the first thing that Jungkook fell in love with. It was the first thing that stuck out the most to him even the first day that they met in the lockers. Jimin cared about him even then. Even when he was a complete stranger and when Jimin didn't know who he was at all. Even a couple of days after he started at the gym when Jungkook was nothing more than a stranger to him, Jimin jumped in front of a gun for him. And now, he did the same thing.

Jungkook let out a wrecked, dry sob, "Why Jimin? Why did you have to be so stupid?!" 

"Thr-Through thick and thin..."

"This isn't the same thing, Jimin!" Jungkook screamed, still holding pressure against the gaping bullet wound. 

"Kookie." Jimin said, shakily reaching a hand out to touch his cheek, to feel his warmth as if it were the last thing that he would do. 

"Jiminie." Jungkook said, grabbing onto his wrist with his free hand, squeezing it lightly as he leaned against his touch. 

"I'm sorry. For everything." Jimin apologised with a small smile. 

"No! No! You don't get to do this, Jimin! Fuck! No! You don't get to be selfish this time! You think you can compensate for everything by sacrificing yourself?! No! You don't deserve the right to be selfish anymore! I'm never going to forgive you for this, Jimin! Never! You hear me?" 

Jimin kept the smile on his face, tears freely streaming down his face as he gasped at the pain.

In a soft voice, as if the anger never existed, Jungkook said, "Please don't go, Jimin, I promised that I would come home. How am I meant to go home when you're not there? You are my home."

"Jungkook...." Jimin said, voice getting further and further away. 

"Jimin. Jiminie, please," Jungkook all but begged, whispering into the darkness, "You're my home, Jimin. Don't take my home from me."

He could barely hear the sound of his name being called, and wailed by Jungkook. All he could hear was the sound of his gasping breath and blood rushing to his ears. He couldn't feel the gentle, caring hands on his body anymore. All he could feel was pain. The agonising, hot, blinding pain of the bullet wound on his side and the blood gushing out of it. 

He thinks to himself that if he were to die now, he would have no regrets. His last moments would be of him receiving gentle caresses, and undivided, devoted attention. He was surrounded by the people that he loves, and the people who truly love him. Even in his darkest, most painful moment...

He felt nothing but light.

"...and everything in between."

 

~~~

 

"Jin, please. Jin don't do this-" Namjoon begged, tears pricking his eyes. 

"Go with the rest of them, Joon," Jin said, taking his hands and pulling it off of him, "Go to the hospital. They need you." 

"They need you too, Jin-" 

"Namjoon, baby, we discussed this-" 

"It was only a possibility then-" Namjoon said. 

"Plan B." Jin told him with a small smile, trying to comfort him, "It was always going to end up with us choosing Plan B. There is no other way to save us, Joon. We both know that." 

"They're going to kill you if they find out," Namjoon said, as though that would make Jin forget about it. 

"They're not going to find out." Jin said with a reassuring smile. 

"Please..." Was all Namjoon could say, barely managing to croak it out. 

Jin cupped his cheeks, bringing his lips to Namjoon's forehead, lips lingering as if to say that he was always going to be there for him. 

"Go to the hospital, Joonie." 

Namjoon nodded, biting his bottom lip, wanting anything but to leave Jin here alone. 

"I'll be right there." Jin said, an empty promise, both of them knowing that he was never coming back. 

Jin got in his car, cursing the fact that he let Kang get away. More than that, that he let Kang hurt his friend. 

There was a part of him, a part that always knew that this was how things were going to end. Plan A was never going to work and Jin didn't know why he convinced himself that it would. Getting the rest of the gang there to ambush Kang's gang did nothing but slow them down. In the end, Jin knew that Plan B was how things were meant to end. 

He parked his car, pocketing the keys and getting out, hearing sirens come and go, seeing the flashing red and blue lights exiting the place. 

Jin walked in, and took a seat in front of the blue uniformed man.

"Hello officer" Jin greeted, with a warm smile, "My name is Kim Seokjin, the leader of the Kim Gang. And I'm here to turn myself in."

 

 

Chapter Text

Our bodies are merciful vessels. 

Even in the darkest, most painful of times, they ensure that we aren't suffering; that we aren't in pain. Or that if we are, we can't feel it. Our bodies make us pass out if it get's too stressed, or if the pain becomes too much. It makes sure that we can't feel the pain. 

The brain is the most merciful of all. Even as we're dying, it gives us a chance to relive all our best memories.

Seven minutes.

420 seconds.

That's the amount of time the brain has as the body shuts down. Seven minutes of activity that it spends solely playing back memories that are deemed as being the most memorable. 

Beep.

"Taehyung?" Jimin called out of the blue, the television becoming background sound now. 

"Hmm?" Taehyung answered non committedly, eyes focused on his phone as he scrolled. 

"Do you think things like this exist?" Jimin asked. 

"Things like what, Chim?"

"Like in the movie," Jimin said, "Loving someone so much that in a blink of an eye, you're willing to give up everything for them?" 

"It's a movie, Jimin." Taehyung said, "I think some artistic license is being used here." 

Jimin nodded, a part of him believing Taehyung but a bigger part not wanting to. "I want to have that." 

"What? Being threatened at gunpoint to prove your life?" Taehyung laughed. 

"No," Jimin said, shaking his head, a small smile on his face, "I want to have a love so deep that I don't even have to think about giving up everything. I want to have a love all consuming, a love where neither of us have to question if we're in this because we know we're in it for the long haul. I want our love to last." 

 

Beep. 

 

"You're not meant to be in here." 

"I needed to pee." Jimin said, voice small and nervous. 

"I could tell." 

"You're..." Jimin said, words dying out on his tongue

"JK." 

"I know." Jimin told him, pathetically, "I saw."

 

Beep. 

 

"You're too stiff, Jimin," Jungkook said, sliding his hands back down his waist, pulling Jimin's back closer to him, "Relax." 

Jimin took a deep breath, his heart practically pounding in his chest. 

"You're not relaxing, Jimin," Jungkook said, almost teasingly.

Jimin could practically hear the smirk that was spread out on Jungkook's face. 

"Why is that?" Jungkook asked, "You seem stiffer than before...Something bothering you?" 

"Oh for fu-" Jimin said, turning around in Jungkook's hold.

Jimin's breath hitched. He didn't expect Jungkook's face to be so close to his. Jimin wondered how close they were to begin with.  

"Are you always this stiff, or is this just with me?" Jungkook said, eyes darkening with a predatory lust that Jimin had never seen before. 

His eyes fleeted between Jungkook's eyes and his plump bottom lip that Jimin couldn't help but think how good it would feel on top of his. 


Beep. 

 

"Every time I think I have you figured out, you surprise me," Jimin said, a smile on his face. 

"In a good way or a bad way?"  Jungkook asked, leaning in.

"In a way." He replied vaguely, a smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye.

 

Beep. 

 

"Jimin," Jungkook breathed out, leaning forward, closing the gap in between them. 

Jimin could feel his heart race and Jungkook hadn't done anything except lean forward. His eyes fluttered shut as he closed the gap in between them, arms slithering to Jungkook's neck as he crashed their lips together. It was soft and slow, and almost intimate in a way that neither one of them could describe. It was different than the other kisses that they shared. Their lips, already so familiar with each other, moved slowly and languidly, almost like muscle memory, fitting together perfectly like a jigsaw puzzle.

 

Beep.

The first time that Jimin realised he loved Jungkook was when he was laughing. 

He was alone in the gym with Jungkook. Yoongi had gone out with Hoseok and Jin hadn't come in to the gym yet. 

Jimin didn't know how hard he had fallen, or even when it began. It could have started yesterday, or even last week, hell, it could have started the first day that he saw Jungkook in the locker room when he was looking for a bathroom, but the point was, that Jimin realised he was in love. 

Jungkook had told him a lame joke, and had his head thrown back in a loud, unabashed, laugh. Laugh after laugh was tumbling from his lips, infectious, making Jimin smile, and heart skip many, many beats. 

In that moment, all Jimin could remember thinking, was how in love he was with the man sitting in front of him. How much he wanted to run his fingers through his thick, bouncy raven hair. How much he wanted to kiss those lips, and hear him talk for hours on end. How he wanted nothing more than to spend his future with him, building a home, building a family. How he imagined coming home to Jungkook, falling asleep next to him, waking up beside him in the morning, knowing that Jungkook was his, and he was Jungkook's. 

Jimin had fallen so deep in love with Jungkook. 

 

Beep. 

 

"Through thick and thin, and everything in between." Jimin proclaimed, intertwining their fingers together like a promise. 

"What's that?" Jungkook asked, staring at him with wide, shimmering eyes. 

"I told myself that if I ever found someone that I care about, like truly care about, that I would make them promise me something," Jimin explained, looking at their entangled, intertwined fingers in fascination, "I would make them promise to stay with me through thick and thin, and everything in between. To never leave my side when times are tough, to laugh with me when things are easy. But most importantly, to never give up in between, or at all." 

 

Beep. Beep. Beep. Beep. 

 

"I love you Park Jimin, with all my heart and more."

 

Beeeeeep. 

 

~~~

 

Jungkook was pacing the short hallway outside of the operation room, head glancing up to the red light every few seconds, hoping that it would change and that he would get an update. 

He tried not to think about how Jimin was limp in his arms as he ran him out of the car into the hospital, screaming and pleading for someone to help him. He tried not to think about how Jimin was ripped from his arms, his blood all over Jungkook's shirt, his skin, his fingers, as he was placed on a bed, nurses and doctor's attending to him. He tried not to think about how his vision got blurry as he was pushed out of the room, with someone muttering something he couldn't hear because his focus was solely on Jimin who was bleeding out on the table. He tried not to think about how the curtains were pulled and suddenly all he could see was white fabric. He tried not to think about how he broke down in Yoongi's arms, begging him to tell Jungkook that Jimin would be okay. That Jimin would be alive. Because Yoongi has never once lied to him. 

He tried not to think about how Yoongi said nothing at all, but just let him cry. 

"Sit down, Kook." Hoseok said, eyes following Jungkook's every move. 

"He's been in there for hours." Jungkook replied, eyes glancing up at the red light again. 

Yoongi sighed, leaning back against the cool white wall, the hallway smelling like sanitizer. He understood what Jungkook was going through. He went through the exact same thing when Hoseok got stabbed. He remembered getting the call from Jin and rushing to the hospital. He remembered the feeling of dread, the feeling of fear inching up and grasping every inch of his skin, filling up his insides. He remembered being in the exact same position as Jungkook was in and knowing that no matter what anyone said, it wouldn't change reality. And the reality was that none of them had any information to act on. The reality was that, all that they could do right now was be there for him and wait. The reality was that, they were helpless. 

Jungkook glanced up at the light again. Still red. 

He sighed, turning around and walking to the end of the imaginary border that he created, and then glanced back up at the light, and then turned around and repeated the process.

"You're making me dizzy." Hoseok mumbled. 

"Then don't look at me." Jungkook snapped back. 

Hoseok was about to say something when Yoongi placed a hand on his forearm and shook his head. 

Taehyung glanced up, tears welling in his eyes as he turned to Namjoon, "Hey, where's Jin?" 

Yoongi snapped his head up, looking around, realising that Jin hadn't even come yet. "Yeah, where is Jin?" 

"Last I saw he was with Namjoon," Hoseok said, making all of them turn to look at Namjoon who was leaning against the back of the uncomfortable chair. 

"I don't know." He lied. 

Taehyung tilted his head slightly, and pursed his lips as he said, "You're lying. Why are you lying?" 

"I'm not." Namjoon lied again. 

Hoseok stood up, eyes slitted, turning dark as he walked over to Namjoon, "What do you know?" 

"Not-Nothing." Namjoon stuttered. 

"Namjoon." Hoseok said, voice gravelly and low, "What do you know? Where is Jin?" 

He could feel Hoseok's stare, heavy, weighing down on his chest. He couldn't look away. Fear started pricking his skin like a needle, spreading over every inch of exposed skin on him. 

"Listen to me, Namjoon," Hoseok said, commanding attention, instilling fear, "This isn't a game. People's lives are at stake. I don't give a fuck about any promises that you made to Jin about keeping this a secret. He could be in danger. So, I'm going to ask you one last time before I do this the hard, and painful way - Where. Is. Jin?" 

Namjoon gulped, not wanting to know how painful the painful way could get. "Po-Police." 

"What?" Yoongi spat out, practically jumping out of his seat. 

"He made me promise not to say anything but he's gone to the police. He's turning himself in." Namjoon rushed out, words tumbling over one another. 

"Turning himself-" Yoongi repeated, whipping his phone out. 

"He won't pick up." Namjoon told them, holding Jin's phone up to them, "He gave me his phone so you guys wouldn't track him." 

"He had this all planned out, didn't he?" Jungkook scoffed, shaking his head, "He knew Plan A wouldn't work so he went behind our backs and-" 

"He's protecting you!" Namjoon defended.

"He's being a fucking idiot!" Yoongi nearly yelled. 

"Which police station?" Hoseok demanded. 

"I don't know." 

"Namjoon I swear to fucking god I will-" Hoseok threatened. 

"I really don't know!" Namjoon screamed, tears pricking his eyes. His voice got softer now, "He didn't tell me. He didn't want me to know." 

"What did he tell you?" Hoseok said, "Tell us everything." 

 

~~~

 

"Hello officer" Jin greeted, with a warm smile, "My name is Kim Seokjin, the leader of the Kim Gang. And I'm here to turn myself in."

"You, the leader of the biggest, most wanted gang in the whole country, is willingly surrendering to the police?" The officer asked, with a cocked eyebrow, suspiciously eyeing Jin who was sitting calmly on the chair opposite his desk.

"You make it sound like it's a bad thing," Jin said, leaning back against the lumpy, uncomfortable, worn out chair, yet looking as if he owned the entire police station. He was oozing confidence even though he was filled with fear that his plan wouldn't work, and a sense of urgency to go back to his family who needed him.

The officer didn't take his eyes off Jin even once, barely blinking for fear of missing something, "What's your play here, Kim?"

"No play." 

"What do you want?" The officer asked. 

"Can't a guy care about his city enough to want to end gang life forever?" 

"If you did, you would be in my seat." The officer deadpanned, voice dripping with authority, "Quit playing games, and tell me what you want." 

Jin sat up straighter now, looking the police officer in the eye as he said, "A deal." 

"What kind of deal?" 

Jin reached into his pockets and slammed a small USB drive onto the chipping wooden desk. 

"What's this?" The officer asked, looking at the small black and red stick on his desk. 

"This contains all of the information on every single gang in the city. Drugs, hideouts, deals, plans..." Jin told him, "Mine too." 

"And you're just giving this to me? To us?" The officer asked, cocking his eyebrow again, trying to figure out what the man in front of him had planned. 

"Not for free." 

"What do you want in exchange?" 

"Immunity from any past crimes committed." Jin said, plain and simple, "Immunity for myself and a list of people." 

The officer scoffed and leaned back against his chair, "You think that I would give up catching you for a stupid USB drive?" 

"You would trade stopping every single gang, all of the crimes, even stop drugs and humans being trafficked, to catch one person?" Jin said, shaking his head, "And here I thought you actually cared about the city." 

"You want me to trust the biggest fucking crook on this planet for information on a drive that I don't even know is real?" The officer said, "No chance in hell." 

"Do you really think I would come here willingly if I didn't actually want to do this?" Jin said, "I've spent my entire life running away from you fuckers and you think I would come here and endanger that? I have no backup! No weapons! And my car is parked right outside. You clearly have the upper hand here!" 

"What's stopping me from taking this USB drive and locking you up right now?" The officer said, his hand reaching out to snatch the USB drive on the table. 

Jin scoffed, leaning back against the chair, relaxed, "Try it, then." 

"What?" 

"Plug it in." Jin said, almost daring him to do it. 

The officer stiffened, putting the USB drive back on the table. 

"It's password protected," Jin said, "And if you somehow manage to bypass the first password, you sure as hell wouldn't be able to bypass the biometrics that only open up to my fingerprints. And if by some miracle you do, you still wouldn't have the decryption key to the files that are all encrypted." 

The officer leaned back against his chair with a sigh. 

"Ball's in your court." Jin said. 

Silence descends the police station with every single officer looking at them, eyeing them, watching their every move, wanting desperately to know what the decision would be. 

The officer finally speaks up, "How many people are on the list?" 

"Whatever's left of my gang." Jin answered. 

"There has to be a cap." The officer tried to negotiate. 

"I'm giving you information about every single fucking gang in the goddamn city plus their hideouts, and the names of the people in the gang and you want to cap how many people I want to have immunity?!" Jin nearly screamed, "You should be fucking thanking me for even stepping foot in this shithole but instead you're fighting me?!" 

"Fine." The officer relents, knowing that there was no way he was going to win this fight, "You and your list of people get immunity." 

"Glad we're in agreement then, officer," Jin said, feeling more at ease now. 

"You get your immunity on one condition," The officer said. 

"What?" 

"Kang. We need him alive." 

"I wasn't going to kill him anyway," Jin said, eye darkening, "Death is too easy of a punishment." 

 

~~~

 

Hoseok hung up on the call and walked back to his anxious and worried family. 

"I have ten people out searching for Jin, and the rest are searching for Kang right now." He informed them. 

"How did we let Kang get away," Yoongi said. 

"We were more worried about Jimin." Taehyung answered.

"You won't find him," Namjoon said, "Jin, I mean. You're not going to find him." 

Hoseok shot him a death glare. 

"Why didn't you stop him?" Yoongi asked, shaking his head. 

"You try stopping Jin once he has his mind set on something," Namjoon snapped at them, "He's doing what he thinks is right! What kind of person would I be if I got in the way of that?" 

"He has a point," Jungkook interjected softly, almost scared to voice his opinion. 

"He what?" Hoseok all but spat out. 

"He's right." Jungkook said, raising his head to meet Hoseok's eyes, "Jin's doing something so incredibly stupid, but selfless. He's being a total fucking idiot, but god, he's doing it because he loves us and he doesn't want any harm to come to us."

Jungkook turned his head to look at the red light that was still on, and in a soft, nearly broken voice, he said, "I, more than anyone, can understand right now." 

"He's going to be okay." Taehyung said with a conviction that no one has ever heard before. 

"You don't know that." Namjoon muttered, letting fear consume him. 

"Of course I do. And we all do." Taehyung told them, firm, "He's Jimin. He's the same person who's trained all this while and fought off more people in that battlefield with nothing but a fucking knife! The only thing that took him down was a bullet that wasn't even meant for him. He's the same strong Jimin that came up to me and wouldn't let me be sad because he didn't like seeing a frown on my face even though I kept pushing him away. He's the same Jimin who's the glue that holds this entire family together. There is no way in hell he's going to let some 2 inch metal defeat him. He's coming out of this. He's going to make it." 

Almost as if on cue, the red light went off and so did the illuminated red sign that read OPERATION THEATRE IN USE. 

They gathered outside the room, antsy, nervous, breath hitched in their throat as the doctor walked out, taking his mask off. His scrubs was littered in blood splatters, sweat dried on his brow as he wiped it off, stress showing in the wrinkled lines of his forehead. 

"Next of kin for Park Jimin?" He announced, exhaustion dripping from his drawled out words. 

"We're here for Park Jimin." Jungkook said immediately, standing right in front. 

The doctor eyed them suspiciously, "Who are you?" 

"Family." Taehyung answered, peeking his head around Jungkook, "We're his family." 

The doctor nodded in understanding, "The operation wasn't easy. The bullet was shot near his hip making it a Transabdominal Gunshot Wound. The bullet was lodged deep into his hip, just missing the pelvic bone and any major gastrointestinal systems." 

"W-What does that me-mean?" Jungkook stuttered, stumbling over his words, the medical jargon getting to be too much, especially after the night he's gone through. 

"It means that the operation was risky, and complicated." The doctor answered in simple terms, "We almost lost him a couple of times, but Jimin is a fighter. I have never seen someone fight that hard." 

Jungkook felt like he could let out a breath of relief, tears pricking his eyes. His knees wobbled, almost going weak as he slumped against the nearest wall, shutting his eyes tight, trying not to let any tears escape. 

"S-So, Jiminie's going to be okay?" Taehyung said, more than he asked, needing that reassurance. 

The doctor smiled and nodded, "He's going to be okay. He needs to be kept in close observation, but the worst of it is over." 

"Can we see him?" Hoseok asked. 

"They're wheeling him to the post-op recovery room right now. It's room 1306, if you want to make your way down there." The doctor told them, "He's still heavily sedated, so he'll be out for a while. I'll come check on him in a couple of hours."

"Thank you doctor. Thank you, so, so much. Thank you." Jungkook