Wooyoung let out a shaky breath and shook his hands anxiously. Yeosang stared at him patiently.
“You don’t…. You don’t have to help me with this” Wooyoung mumbled, biting his lip. He was never this nervous; normally he’s super outgoing and passionate about almost everything. But now he was acting like a whole different person.
“Come here” Yeosang said softly, patting his own thigh in hopes that Wooyoung would understand. He did, and he climbed into the older’s lap, albeit hesitantly. Yeosang moved his arms so he could hold onto the younger securely. “If I didn’t want to do this then I wouldn’t have brought it up.”
“ Oh ” Wooyoung mumbled, playing with the strings on his hoodie. He supposed Yeosang was telling the truth, since he never even reacted badly when he confessed to the older. They had been friends for around two months already when one day Wooyoung brought up age regression. He’d stumbled across it on the internet while reading Bts fanfiction (yes, Wooyoung is a major army and he’s not afraid to admit it), and it had intrigued him enough to do research and even ask Yeosang what he thought about it. Yeosang had been a little confused, but accepting nonetheless, and he had asked Wooyoung if he regressed. Of course Wooyoung had just recently learned about it, so he hadn’t gotten to try anything out, but he wanted to, so he was honest with his friend. Then Yeosang offered to be his caregiver, after doing some more research, and that’s how they got in this situation.
“I, um, I got you some stuff-“ Yeosang spoke up a little nervously. He leaned over to his backpack, never letting go of Wooyoung who was still in his lap, and pulled out a medium sized box wrapped in Spongebob wrapping paper. Wooyoung felt his heart squeeze at the gesture. He was so glad Yeosang was taking this seriously. “-um, I didn’t really know exactly what to get, but I did research and these were the easiest.”
“You didn’t have to-“ Wooyoung tried, but the elder shook his head and pushed the box into Wooyoung’s hands. The younger took a deep breath and slowly peeled off the wrapping paper. Once the paper was off, he opened the box and his breath hitched once he saw the contents inside. The first thing he saw was a purple paci, it wasn’t an adult paci, but it’d still work. He blushed and moved it aside to find crayons and markers and even a zoo themed colouring book. He smiled happily and took it out to use later, along with the colouring utensils. There was also play doh, picture books, a purple sippy cup that matches his paci, and some Lego’s. Wooyoung was grateful for everything that Yeosang had gotten him, but there was something missing. “No stuffie?”
“Oh! That’s right, I almost forgot!” Yeosang exclaimed, pulling his bag closer and rummaging through it to find something. Wooyoung watched him with wide eyes. “Aha! Here it is! It didn’t fit in the box so I left it in my bag, thanks for reminding m-“
“A puppy?!” Wooyoung gasped, snatching it out of Yeosang’s hands. It was a webkinz mini golden retriever plushie, and it fit perfectly in Wooyoung’s hands. The younger clutched it to his chest and stared up at Yeosang innocently. “Mine?”
“Yes, baby, it’s yours” Yeosang chuckled and ruffled his hair fondly. “So, what are you gonna name it?”
“C-Can I name him Buddy?” Wooyoung asked, playing with the stuffie’s ears.
“Of course you can, ah you’re so cute!” Yeosang cooed, pinching the younger male’s cheeks. Wooyoung giggled before moving to grab the colouring stuff.
“Sangie help Wooyoungie colour?” Wooyoung asked brightly, and how could Yeosang say no?
It went on like that for a while, Wooyoung regressing at least twice a month and Yeosang taking care of him. Somewhere in between they had both left BigHit and joined KQ Entertainment. From there they met new people and made new friends, and they had went to America together with seven other people. They’d been through a lot, but it was worth it in the end because they were going to debut. All eight of them together. They had learned to know and trust each other throughout the time they spent together. Except Wooyoung still wasn’t ready to tell anyone about his regression. He wasn’t planning on doing so for a long ass time.
Until San, one of the other members, did something no one expected. Honestly Wooyoung thinks he’s stupid for not noticing sooner. Because really, San never goes anywhere without Shiber. That alone should have been enough for Wooyoung, and even Yeosang, to know that San had to be an age regressor.
Yet the thought hadn’t even penetrated their minds until one day during breakfast, while everyone else was at the table, Yunho came into the room confusedly.
“Hey guys, I was looking through my drawers for something and I found this-“ Yunho announced awkwardly and held up a folded piece of paper. “-and I don’t really understand it.”
“Give it here” Hongjoong said, so Yunho moved forward to hand it to him before sitting down next to Seonghwa, who was looking over Hongjoong’s shoulder to take a peek.
“.... ‘go to sleep as early as possible’…. ‘don’t forget to brush your teeth’….” Seonghwa read aloud, and no one noticed San tense up. “‘Don’t skip meals’…. ‘clean up after yourself so no one finds out’? ‘Always bring…. Shiber’?”
“Shiber?” Jongho spoke up, and now everyone’s eyes were on San, whose face was burning red, and tears were building up behind his closed eyelids. “San hyung…. is this yours?”
San didn’t speak. Wooyoung and Yeosang looked at each other because they were the only ones who knew what this was. A list of rules for when San was little, for when he was regressed.
“Wait…. ‘go to the studio when feeling little’, what does that even mean?” Hongjoong asked confusedly. San kept his mouth closed. “San-“
“Hey guys, maybe we should drop it” Wooyoung interjected boldly. Now everyone was staring at him, but he never really broke easily. He swallowed dryly before continuing. “I don’t think San hyung is comfy talking about this right now, so let’s leave it alone and finish eating.”
Everyone shrugged, and went back to breakfast. It was silent and kinda awkward. Hongjoong neatly folded the paper back up and slid it into San’s hands, and then left a soft kiss against the younger’s temple.
“We can talk later” Hongjoong whispered, but Yeosang and Wooyoung heard. And they were going to talk to San first.
After breakfast everyone went to get ready for the day. Some of the members had things to do, while the others were free for the morning. Thankfully Yeosang, Wooyoung, and San had most of the day off and didn’t have training until later in the evening. Hongjoong announced that he wasn’t very busy all day, only working on perfecting the already perfect songs for their debut, so if anyone needed him they could go to the studio he was occupying that day.
Once everyone was gone, Wooyoung cornered San, Yeosang following close behind.
“San” Wooyoung said staring at him intently. San looked up at him with fearful eyes. Shiber was nowhere near him, which was different because usually when San had any time off he was cuddled up with his number one stuffie and watching something dumb on the tv. He must’ve thought it was best to not have Shiber with him in fear that he would slip or something like that.
“San, it’s okay” Yeosang muttered, coming to sit next to him on the sofa. He brought a hand up to move the hair out of the younger’s face. “You’re an age regressor, right?”
“What? How did you-“
“I’m also…. a regressor” Wooyoung admitted sheepishly. They could both feel San’s tenseness evaporate, and he relaxed against the cushions with a soft sigh.
“This is just…. so much ” San frowned and frustratedly wiped at his eyes with his hoodie sleeves. “I know it’s not weird, but it feels weird, like I shouldn’t do it- like I shouldn’t enjoy doing it.”
“Hey, it’s alright, don’t get yourself all worked up there” Yeosang patted his shoulder. “I know you don’t wanna tell the members, but I think it’s too late, and lying to them will only make things worse.”
“I know, but I don’t want them to be disappointed in me-“
“I highly doubt they will” Wooyoung interrupted. “I can come out with you if you wanna.”
“Is that alright? Are you sure??” San asked surprisedly, staring at the younger with wide eyes. Wooyoung nodded enthusiastically and San had to bite back a smile.
So that night, after everyone was done with schedules and they were all back at the dorms, they decided to talk. San sat between Wooyoung and Yeosang for comfort.
“So I assume you called this family meeting to explain what Yunho found this morning?” Hongjoong asked, and everyone stared towards San. The young boy nodded. Shiber was nestled right in his lap and Yeosang gave his hand an encouraging squeeze.
“So I, um…. what you saw was a list….” San trailed off. He could already feel his eyes swelling with tears. He felt Wooyoung start to rub his back.
“Do you want me to tell them? Or Yeosangie?” Wooyoung asked quietly, but it sounded like he was talking normally in the silent room. San shook his head.
“No, I can do this, um, yeah…. so it was a list of rules. For when I…. for when I r-regress” San admitted, biting his lip hard to try to keep his tears back. “And- and it means that I-“
“Wait a second- isn’t that when someone acts like a baby or- or a kid as a stress reliever? I came across it one day a while back when I was looking up ways to destress, and it looked interesting” Mingi interrupted, and San nearly cried. He loved Mingi so much, of course he wasn’t going to think it was weird or stupid.
“So it's a kink?” Seonghwa asked before anyone else could say anything. Now all eyes were on him. He looked kind of weirded out, and it made San feel sick.
“N-No! It isn’t like that at all!” Wooyoung spoke up for him. “What you’re thinking of is ‘age play’, and that’s when people act younger for…. sexual reasons, but this…. age regression is one hundred percent pure and never ever sexual in any way whatsoever!”
“Yeah, with age play there’s power exchange and there’s sub and dom dynamic” Yeosang started. “Age regression is totally different. Like, for example, I take care of Wooyoung when he regresses, and yes he knows I’m in charge and I watch over him and I play with him and I do stuff for him when he’s too little, but I still treat him like he’s equal, not like I’m the dominant one who makes all of his decisions, I guess.”
“Okay, yeah, that makes sense. And if it helps you guys to do this, then we have no right to stop you” Hongjoong said, leaning over to squeeze San’s knee. “And most of us are new to this, but if any of you need anything please come to me, okay? I will try my hardest to take care of you who need it.”
“Really, hyung?” San pouted, looking up at their leader with wet eyes.
“Yes of course, Sannie” Hongjoong cooed and kissed the younger’s nose.
“What about everyone else?” Mingi asked nervously. Hongjoong sat back in his seat and looked around at the other members expectantly.
“I’m okay with it” Jongho said first. “I don’t know if I would be a good caregiver, but maybe like a babysitter if that’s what it’s called?”
“Yeah, me too! I’ll try my best” Yunho followed after. Then everyone looked at Seonghwa.
“It’s…. different” the eldest sighed. “And I won’t say I don’t find it a bit weird. But I’m willing to try it out- being a caregiver, because we’re a team and we’re going to be together for a while, hopefully at least a few years, and I want to be there for all of you and I want you all to feel comfortable with coming to me when you’re feeling like you need someone to care for you.”
“Don’t get all sappy on us, hyung!!” Wooyoung whined out playfully, making everyone laugh.
“Thank you, hyung, that means a lot” Yeosang spoke for the two known regressors. “And thank you everyone else for being so supportive.”
“So, um, how does it work?” Yunho asked.
“Well, for me, I regress usually once a month, sometimes more, sometimes less, so when I’m feeling like I need to I’ll go to Yeosang hyung and he’ll help me slip into my headspace and make me feel comfy” Wooyoung explained. “I’m not sure about San hyung though, we just found out about him earlier.”
“Um, for me….” San started, taking a deep breath and staring down at Shiber while he talked. “I try not to slip too much because I didn’t wanna get caught. But usually once every two and a half months I guess, unless I’m really stressed. And I always make sure I’m alone and all that because I never wanted you guys to know or be apart of th-“
“Why not, Sannie?” Mingi interrupted. He looked kind of hurt.
“I…. because it’s not normal , and I tried to stop, but I couldn’t and I feel so bad.”
“You don’t have to feel bad for doing something that helps you, it doesn’t hurt anyone and it makes you feel better, and we want the best for you” Mingi told him, moving closer to squeeze him into a hug.
“Okay, I’ll try.”
Nothing else happened until a few weeks after they debuted. They had finished their schedules for the day and they had the next day off. So they all decided to cuddle up together in the living room to watch a movie even though it was already nearing midnight. Everyone was getting settled when Yeosang walked into the room holding Wooyoung’s and San’s hands.
“What movie?!” Wooyoung asked loudly, hopping onto the sofa next to Yunho. Yeosang nudged San to encourage him to go sit with whoever he wanted. The younger, clutching tightly onto Shiber, hesitantly moved forward until he was standing in front of Hongjoong, who was sitting on the nest of blankets they’d made on the floor. The leader looked up at him with a smile.
“Sannie sit here?” San asked, starting to nibble on Shiber’s ear. Hongjoong seemed to light up once he found out that San had to be regressed. So he nodded, and let San crawl into his lap. He pet the younger’s hair gently, and watched him fondly. Yeosang, who was now sitting next to Wooyoung, noticed San start to suck on his thumb, so he leaned forward to poke Hongjoong on the shoulder.
“Here, hyung, give this to him” Yeosang whispered, handing over a yellow adult paci that had a flower sticker on it. Hongjoong stared at it in surprise, and a little confusion, but he took it hesitantly.
“Hey, San, use this” he mumbled, carefully pulling San’s thumb out of his mouth and replacing it with the paci before the younger started whining too much.
“Since they’re here maybe we can watch a kids movie?” Yunho suggested.
“We have to watch Mulan” Jongho requested. Wooyoung gasped.
“Mulan!” Wooyoung yelled, bouncing on the couch. Seonghwa grabbed the remote and turned on Netflix and put on Mulan. The whole movie San giggled at Wooyoung and Jongho singing along to the music.
The next day, after breakfast, Hongjoong stopped San, Wooyoung, and Yeosang before they could make it out of the kitchen.
“Hey, so I was thinking, and maybe we could make a new list of rules for San? And Wooyoung too, and anyone else who would want to regress” the leader told them, biting his lip.
“Are you sure, hyung? I don’t wanna waste your time with that” San blushed, scratching his neck awkwardly.
“It’s not a waste of time” Hongjoong assured him. “If I thought it was then I wouldn’t have suggested doing it. So come on, let’s make a new and improved one!”
In the end they kept most of the stuff San had already put on the list. Things like ‘go to sleep as early as possible’, ‘don’t forget to brush your teeth’, and ‘don’t skip meals’ stayed on the list. They added more things like ‘always tell someone when you’re feeling little’, ‘always tell someone if you did something bad’, and things like that.
“Thanks, hyung” San said quietly once they were finished. Yeosang was hanging the list on the fridge. The leader turned to hug San.
“It’s really no problem, love. We want you to be comfy with doing this, okay? And it’s not just you, so don’t forget that you’re not alone in this” Hongjoong reassured him, placing a kiss on the top of his head. San was so glad that these people were in his team.