You greeted your best friend with a hug. "Oh my god. You look so good. I bet Irene helped you with a couple of things, didn't she?" Her fingers slide down your newly dyed hair, her eyes turning into crescents when she realises it's ombré. "Do you like it?"
"Of course I do," She smiles. "We should get going, to avoid traffic." You nod and tug your suitcase behind you. You don't know why you were expecting Seoul to be so different—you were only gone for a few days. You make sure that you text Irene that you landed and thank her for the short trip you had and how you need to meet up with her soon. Seulgi mentions how Jaehyun had contacted her while you were gone about your presence and you weren't surprised as you got contacted by Johnny. "You know that they had a building in L.A? I kinda was walking the streets myself and I saw that they have a place there too."
"Well, they're rich. I bet you every country you travel to you'll see something about Jaehyun or his father and mother."
You winced hearing his name again. With your regular lectures coming up in a few days, you didn't want to deal with Jaehyun walking behind your back yelling your name. Or even worse, dealing his exes. Or even way worse, being known as Jaehyun's side chick or something and turning up to basketball matches with a label on you. You didn't know how he was feeling but you could guess he knew he messed things up. You couldn't imagine Jaehyun feeling down; that was never him and you assumed he didn't like people seeing him cry. The hundred texts, calls and voicemails were rapidly increasing every time from Jaehyun and you had to answer him someday.
You and Seulgi continue to converse about your flight and what you did in Los Angeles, explaining to her about how Irene was offering you to stay and continue to study at UCLA. It wasn't exactly what you wanted in the moment but you were definitely going to consider it. "Do you not want any lunch?"
"No, it's okay. I'm going back to headquarters as soon as you drop me off anyway," You shrug. "How's Kihyun?"
"We're still good, he's feeding me fried chicken every night." You laugh, "Good. I'm really happy for you."
"I hope you find someone soon, Y/N," Seulgi gives you a small smile, "You deserve someone who will love you forever."
Familiar voices echo through the building and you're already suffocating when you're shoved in a small huddle. "Oh my god, I can't breathe.."
"I asked for Jolly Ranchers!"
"Did you get me the Louis Vuitton bag I wanted?!"
You roll your eyes, "Jeez, just go through the bags and find what you wanted." They all chorus a thank you and before you know it, Donghyuck, Jeno, Chenle and Jisung are all fighting over the American candy you got. A soft kiss was placed on your shoulder and you giggle girlishly, "Ah, hey Yong."
"Hey my love. You look beautiful." He smiles, wrapping his arms around your waist.
"Thank you," You blush, "How's work so far?"
"Fine, it's all going well," He raises an eyebrow at the four boys opening everything that you placed in the bag. "You know, I'm kind of glad you're practically in charge of them."
"I'll clear up the mess, don't worry," You tug on the ends of his shirt, "I still haven't unpacked and I did my best to get here quickly. I also finished some of the files that you sent me."
"You shouldn't have," Taeyong grins, "How was your trip?"
"It was good, Irene told me to call her anytime I change my mind about staying here and University of SM." You look down, "You shouldn't worry, though,"
"I mean, you could find a better agency there too."
You frown, "Nothing is like N.C.T, you idiot," You flick him in the forehead and his hands grip your waist, "I know, I was testing you." You laugh, "You should get back to work now, Tae."
"Are you sure?"
"Yes, don't worry, I'll hold the code breaking class instead of Ten," You shove him lightly, leading him to the exit, "See you later Tae!" He kisses your forehead before chuckling and when he leaves you turn back to the four boys on the floor, candy wrappers messily everywhere. "Don't give me that look."
"You two are gross," Jeno teases.
"I'm going to throw up," Donghyuck gags jokingly and you slap him lightly. "Ow!"
"It's what you deserve," You mutter. Everyone laughs and Donghyuck pouts, "You're so mean."
You: stop texting me and calling me, jaehyun
You took a deep breath.
You: we aren't anything anymore, can't you see that?
Jae: please y/n, i love you, you have to hear me out.
Jae: i really do y/n, i won't give up on you. i don't care how long it takes. but please, if we can meet up and talk, i promise that i'll wait for you. i just need you to listen to me
Jae: i don't want you ignoring me forever
You: yeah, okay
You hesitated typing that. He didn't seem to respond after that and you shut your phone off and it was just in time Taeyong came over with your orders. The two of you finished work and you decided to eat at a diner near his apartment. Placing your phone in your purse and sighing at the food, you begin to eat. "You look mad."
"I'm just... hangry." Taeyong lets out a laugh at your response, "Alright then."
"Any missions being set yet?" You said, shoving a fry into your mouth straight after. Taeyong sighs and pauses, "Yeah, but I haven't set a meeting for it. There's a bomber in Seoul right now but Doyoung and I haven't exactly found their location and identity."
You widen your eyes, "Seriously?"
"Yeah. We're working on it eventually."
"Do we have to do anything?"
He nods. "Similar to defending Mr. Jung."
"Oh god." You mumble.
You were already preparing to move back into your university dorms with Seulgi by putting clothes and other things you needed in boxes. Taeyong had kindly offered to drop you off at your apartment and he didn't leave your side until you closed the door and said your final goodnights with him. You groaned when there was a quiet knock on your door and you brushed the dust off your knees, standing up. Packages weren't definitely delivered at seven at night, and you just ate out with Taeyong so you knew you didn't place a delivery for anything.
Your throat becomes dry at the sight.
"Y/N.." The voice slurred. Jaehyun's back was slumped as his black hoodie covered his head, leaning against your doorframe. He smelt like alcohol and you frowned at him. "I want to throw up."
"Uh, yeah, wait," You sighed, holding his arms and closing the door behind him. His eyes were shut, feeling dizzy when you moved him to the bathroom. You sat him down onto the floor, head next to the toilet and he groaned. "Hey, can I take your hoodie off? I don't think you want your vomit all over."
Jaehyun starts laughing and his eyes are glossy. He looks up at you, "Hah. Okay sure, cutie."
You furrow your eyebrows and hold his shirt and take his hoodie off at the same time, tossing it on your bed and Jaehyun takes a deep breath. "Y/N, I miss you."
"I thought you're going to throw up."
"Throw.. what up?" He giggles.
"Do you still love me? Am I the reason you went L.A?" His eyes are dark. It's awkward: the two of you sitting in your bathroom. You taking care of a drunk, questionable and flustered Jaehyun—which, you don't even know how he stumbled his way all the way to your apartment—and he was beginning to question everything. "Be honest. Because I do love you."
"My head really hurts.." He sighs. "I found it cute when you laid on my chest and just.. you told me you love me. I miss that. Remember?"
"Come on Jaehyun. You don't know what you're saying."
"I do!" He retorts, hiccuping. "I love you Y/N and I came here because I want to just love you again and tell you—"
"We can talk about this when you're sober, Jaehyun," You stand up, not wanting to hear his words and he scoffs and stands up, "Take my bed tonight. Goodnight," You sigh, gasping when he begins to unzip his pants. You shut the door quickly and turn the light off, groaning when you forget to bring spare blankets and pillows with you to sleep on your couch.
You hope that he doesn't remember anything he told you.
"Aw fuck." Jaehyun rubs his temples and screams when he tosses on the bed, facing your bedroom walls. Oh, right. He thought. How stupid he was for walking ten minutes to your apartment. He doesn't even know how he even found the right door. He just needed to drink his frustration and tears away. Maybe he drank a bit too much, though. His phone read 9:00AM. Texts from Johnny and Jaemin appeared on his phone, several calls from his mother.
"Could you shut the fuck up?" You sigh, turning the lights on. Your hair was tousled and you were shivering, forgetting to turn the air con off before you slept. Jaehyun blushed when you appeared. "My neighbours are going to think that I'm committing murder."
"Here," You mumble, handing him water and medicine for his headache. You turn your back to head to the bathroom to find your robe and Jaehyun calls your name. "Wait, Y/N."
"What?" You ask, harshly. "As soon as you get back into your attire you're getting out of my apartment." Jaehyun takes a deep breath and gets out of your bed, putting his jeans on, "We need to talk!"
"We don't!" You yell back. You make yourself tea and Jaehyun's deep voice makes you jump. "Okay, you're dressed, you can get out now."
"Don't do this."
"Do what?!" You bark. Tears began to blur your vision.
"You need to listen to me. I can explain everything," He takes your hand in his, "I.. I drank last night because I was just angry with myself, okay? I hurt you Y/N and I refused to forgive myself because I love you. Johnny told me you went to L.A and all I could think of was you just tried escaping from me. I don't even want to look at my parents because all I care about at the moment is you. I never want to lose you and I know everything is my fault. I told Olivia I don't love her anymore and I'm just so fucking sorry for what you've seen about the two of us. I asked articles to be taken down and I asked Seulgi for help and.. I'm sorry. I shouldn't have come over last night."
"D-Did you know what you even said to me?"
"I remember asking you if you still love me. Do you?" Jaehyun asks and your heart stops beating for a second. Your hands are shaky, "I.."
"I.. I know. I get it," He mumbles, "I didn't mean to hurt you. I'm sorry. I always loved you. I just.. I didn't know Olivia was coming back and I promise I never felt anything for her. My mother forced us for the press and I hated it. I don't want you hidden from my parents but I don't want them shoving anything that has to do with my past relationships down your throat. I'm sorry for thinking false of you and Johnny. For every single thing I've done to hurt you."
"I understand if you still need time alone. I'll wait for you, angel. I always will." He gives you a small smile and turns his back and you hold his wrist. "I... I miss you too."
He kisses your forehead. "I miss you even more. Don't rush anything. I told you I'll wait."
"I'm really sorry. I mean it. I love you, Y/N."
You were uncertain about everything.
It was like a puzzle. Piece everything together with knowledge and it'll get messed up again.
Even Jaemin had reached out to you and asked to forgive Jaehyun. You ran into Jaehyun a couple of times and he gave you a small smile before walking away. You felt blameable that you were the cause that he wasn't with his parents at the moment, some articles questioning Jaehyun's absence when he didn't appear with his parents. They must have hated you at this point, for sure.
You were packing up your things, ready for sleep to take over for the rest of the night. Jeno had given you paperwork to email back to him before he emails Jungwoo. "Want me to drop you home? I'm going straight to Jaemin's after anyway," Jeno offered, pushing his glasses on the bridge of his nose.
"A bus should be fine. My place isn't far, you know that."
"Nah, I insist," He gives you a cheeky smile, "Jeez, your office smells like a freakin' rose garden." You freeze.
"They're from Jaehyun?"
"No?" You squeak, not intending it to sound like a question.
"Um," You pause. "Okay Jen, how about we uh, just.. leave." You laugh nervously, cheeks heating up. "They're from Taeyong then, right?"
"Don't be so nosy."
Jeno rolls his eyes and you grip onto his shoulders and walk him out your office. You lock the door and smile up at him, "Don't worry about it, Jen."
"Whatever you say," Jeno raises his brow.
"Oh my god. You scared me." You pout, clutching your chest.
"I'm sorry," Taeyong chuckles. "Hey, Mark and I are performing tonight. Some of us are meeting there." His attire seems to describe him well; his usual black skinny jeans, his belt covered with chains with a sheer shirt underneath a white button up. Your eyes quickly avert to his, "You're dressed so fucking extra, Yong."
"Gotta wow the crowd, my love." He smiles. Your knees were shaking when his finger lands on your jaw. "I'll meet you outside. Wear something pretty for me."
You choke, "Fuck, Taeyong." He lets out a chuckle and leaves, making you sigh. You definitely weren't sleeping tonight.
A navy, low cut dress was what you opted for. Taeyong twirls the keys in his hand and whistles when he sees you. No makeup was thrown on, but you did manage to do your hair in ten minutes after you showered. When he parks his car, you end up greeting Mark and Donghyuck at the entrance while Ten, Taeil, Kun and Yuta seem to be inside drinking already.
"Drink up, Y/N!" Ten excitedly yelled into your ear making you cover your ears, laughing. He hands you a shot and Taeyong's hand sits on your thigh. "Hey, you have to be sober enough to understand the lyrics of their song tonight Ten."
"Oh. Right." He groans and you all laugh. You turn to Mark once everyone seems to be talking. "What's the song list tonight, Lee?"
Mark chuckles. "Mad City again. Apparently everyone loves it."
"They're not wrong," You shrug, "Mad life, Mark. I heard that you named one Regular after a file I named."
"I hope you don't mind," He piped, his cheeks heating. "I swear it's as good as Mad City."
"I'm proud of you, Mark," You pretend to sob, wiping away at your cheeks. "I'll look forward to hearing it."
"You're the best," He hugs you, "Ah, I actually should get going." Mark pats everyone's shoulders and you all give him a good luck. He tells Taeyong he'll just yell his name from the stage.
Soon, sweaty bodies arrive at the stage when someone announces their names. "Mark and T.Y, with a new song Regular!" Donghyuck cheers loudly for them and hands you a mocktail. Ten, Yuta, Kun and Taeil seemed to have disappeared within the crowds and you're bopping your head to the beat.
"Yeah yeah, I like shining, you be lyin', I be grindin', you waste time, know you wanna roll with me, 'cause you know I put it down." Mark begins, patting Taeyong's back.
"When I show up, I'm the one and only, no, no, no." Taeyong starts.
"Yeah, pull up in the jag, haters gon' be mad," Mark finishes.
You excuse yourself from Donghyuck and find another drink. The spotlight constantly switches to Mark and Taeyong, both immersed in the song and rapping. It was a completely different Taeyong on stage: his dark eyes, his voice deep and husky from the rapping. How he didn't give a single fuck about anyone who was judging him secretly.
You turn around and rub your eyes. "Uh, I didn't think I'd..."
Your body stops. "J-Jaehyun?"
"W-What are you doing here?"
"N-Nothing, I was um, Donghyuck saw that there were new drinks.." You stutter, covering your body with your arms.
"I got them racks on me, I brought the whole lit team with me, I might pull up in a spaceship, hop out it, don't look like I live here." Taeyong's eyes find yours in the desperate crowd. He sees everybody else that came along tonight, but not you. You weren't standing next to Donghyuck, sipping the mocktail, something you never opt for at a club.
The song feels like it's performed forever and when he finishes, Taeyong immediately runs off the stage.
"Where are you going?" Mark asks.
"Nothing. Don't worry about it." Taeyong responds.
Jaehyun's wrist is gripped on yours as he whispers into your ear, "How about we go back to your place?"
"Jaehyun," Shivers ran down your spine, "I.."
"Ah, Yoonoh." A familiar voice said, cutting you off.
Shock crossed your face.
Taeyong smirked at Jaehyun's response. "It's been a while, Taeyong."