"Omg! Jikook is real! I can't believe it! Omg Jikook stans assemble!" - the tweet read.
Jimin stared at the phone lying on Taehyung's bed and the words jumped at him, mocking him.
The word 'Jikook' had been coined by their fans, and he wasn't bothered by it. In fact he hadn't noticed that ship until a few fans had waved signs with 'Jikook' at them, during the Rosebowl concert.
Is that how their misunderstanding had started? Jimin wondered. Or was it before that?
"What are you staring at?"
Taehyung stood behind him, close, but not close enough for him to feel the warmth for his band mate. If it had been the old Taehyungie, he would have wrapped his arms around Jimin's waist and tickled his side. But not now, and not today.
Jimin felt his throat close up and fought the urge to cry. The words on Taehyung's phone screamed at him, branded him.
"Jimin-ah?" Taehyung took a step towards him, but still not close enough. He made sure to maintain the distance.
It was too much for Jimin. He let out a breath and turned with a smile on his face. "It's nothing. I was just looking for my phone." He said and avoided Taehyung's eyes. "I must have left it on Hobi hyung's table."
Jimin ran out of the room before he could hear Taehyung's next words. He tried to escape the suffocating feeling in his chest. But the more his ran, the worse he felt, until he stopped in front of Namjoon's door. Their dorm hallway was dimly lit and he could see a light through the gap between the door and the floor. He was still awake.
Jimin wanted so bad to talk to someone.
No, Jimin shook his head. He couldn't push this one on the members. They were on vacations. It was a time to relax and enjoy time with their families. He didn't want to interrupt their plans.
"You will have to figure it out on your own, Jimin-ah." Jimin whispered to himself.
But in reality, he didn't know how to figure it out. He didn't know what had broken to fix it. He didn't know how things had changed so drastically between him and Taehyung.
Jimin vaguely remembered noticing a growing distance between him and Taehyung two days after the Rosebowl concert. But he hadn't suspected a change in behavior and thought Taehyung needed some space. It was the little things that Jimin's eye missed in the beginning and what made him realize a month later - that something had gone horribly wrong between him and his best friend.
Taehyung didn't outwardly show any change towards him. No, that idiot was subtle, picking their relation apart,piece by piece.
They didn't call him a good actor for nothing.
Jimin and Taehyung were joined at the hip since highschool, they knew each other inside out. Jimin knew when he was happy and when he was sad. He knew who he loved the most and who he disliked. Jimin was the only one who had an idea about Taehyung's love for their youngest member.
He had confided in Jimin one night, a bit drunk and tipsy, but still in control of his thoughts and mouth. Taehyung had mentioned Jungkook, and went to great length to praise him, as if Jimin didn't know him already. But Jimin being the best friend he was, let Taehyung continue his speech, until he sputtered his uncertain love confession.
Taehyung knew he had fallen for Jungkook. But youngest had no clue and Taehyung wanted to keep it that way. Jimin had tried to change his mind, but he was met with the same answer.
"He's too young to understand my love for him." Taehyung had said.
Jimin didn't bring up the topic again.
If he had known the Jikook fans would grow in numbers after the hug he and Jungkook shared at the Rosebowl concert, he would have stayed away.
But he didn't know the impact it had on Taehyung. He didn't know Taehyung searched the posts under Jikook. He didn't know what Taehyung felt until it was too late.
His actions, Jimin thought back, were careful. Maybe Taehyung didn't want to look suspicious.
Their morning breakfasts together, where he made Jimin toast everyday, turned to once in a while meetings. Taehyung blamed it on his late nights playing some games or that he overslept. Jimin had laughed it off and made sure Taehyung knew he missed him.
Hi box smile had been the same genuine one. Only now, Jimin knew it was a fake.
Their time spent rolling on studio floor, and playing with each others hair was reduced to Taehyung tugging at his hair for a minute and then running off to play with Jin hyung. Even then Jimin hadn't felt anything wrong.
It was Taehyung after all. He loved the boys too much and at any given time could blind them with his love and smiles and back hugs.
It was natural or so Jimin had thought.
"Jiminnie?" A voice snapped Jimin out of his reverie.
"What are you doing?" Hobi's face appeared in front of him.
Something in his chest loosened and Jimin smiled at him. It was his luck to have found the sunshine of their band when he needed it most. He loved all the band members, but Jung Hoseok was different.
He was Jimin's happy pill. And right now, Jimin needed him.
"Uh hyung...can I sleep in your bed today?"
"I don't think I'll be able to sleep in my bed today."
Hobi frowned. "What's wrong?"
Jimin chuckled. "Do I need to have a reason to sleep in your bed, hyung?"
Hobi gave him a look. It was too dark for Jimin to make out the expression on his face, but his eyes said, he had questions.
Jimin wasn't the type to wander the dorm hallways at night. Everybody knew it.
"Just let me sleep with you...please?" Jimin hated the desperation in his voice. But he couldn't help it. It was been four weeks and counting and he hadn't felt Taehyung's hug. He needed a familiar touch on his body tonight, anything to make the awful realization disappear.
He wanted to bury the thought that had filled his head, since yesterday. He wanted to forget the fact that his best friend had drifted away from him because the fandom had started cheering for him and Jungkook being together.
In a world where people should be supporting Taekook, there were fans shouting for him and Jungkook to get together.
How was he supposed to change that?
"You can sleep with me tonight." Hobi said and held out his hand. Jimin took it and they walked back to Hobi's room.