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Saw You in a Dream

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Seungmin knows what his soulmate sees when he dreams of him. Knows that his pants are always somehow perfectly pressed, that he’s always just a little too serious for his own good. The only thing interesting he can remember doing in front of any of his friends is play a prank every now and then. He probably seems like a spoiled rich kid, in his own opinion. But Felix always laughs at what he says, Hyunjin is constantly calling him cute and Minho insists that they enjoy his company – so he’s not insecure about himself – at least not really.

The problem is that when Seungmin dreams of his own soulmate he gets to see how the other man lives. It’s a stark contrast from the lavish life he was used to. He sees a dank little apartment that his soulmate shares with two other men (who just so happen to be the two people who he gets to peek into his soulmate's life through). He sees ripped jeans and dirty worn down sneakers. Seungmin almost feels bad about how privileged he is comparatively, except his soulmate never seems unhappy with his humble life. If anything, he embraces it – Seungmin knows that the three in the apartment formed a small underground music group. It pisses Seungmin off that every time he tries to look them up their name conveniently eludes him.

The universe is a bitch, making him forget like that.

He glared at the empty search bar on SoundCloud, locking his phone in frustration.

“You do that every day” Hyunjin commented around the pen he was chewing on, not looking up from his textbook “If you’re that curious go and search the clubs that do live performances”

Seungmin stared at his friend incredulously, there were multiple reasons why he couldn’t just go scouring through random clubs and bars until he sees the taught muscles and sharp jawline of his soulmate on stage “No” is what he ends up responding with, no reason given.

Hyunjin laughs at him glancing up and pointing at him with the chewed up end of the pen “Then get back to studying for your test tomorrow”

“Fuck off” Seungmin whined “I’m better at keeping track of my studying than you are. I’ll be fine”

“You should be nicer to me” Hyunjin pouted “Your soulmate is seeing you through my eyes, you know”

Seungmin can’t help but to roll his eyes “I’ll start being nice to you for that reason the moment my soulmate is nice to his friends” and it’s kind of bullshit, because as far as he can tell his soulmate is nice to his friends. Nicer to his friends than they are to him most of the time at least.  

Hyunjin seemed to let it go at that, because the next thing he said was “Hey you took this class last semester, right?” he lifted up his textbook “Could you help me with this chapter?”

Seungmin sighed but scooted closer nonetheless, it was the least he could do.

++

“Alright calm down edge lord” Jisung laughed, throwing a couch pillow at his shorter friend.

Changbin squawked indignantly “I haven’t said anything for ten minutes!”

“It's your vibe man” Jisung tells him, as if it was an obvious answer – as if that explained it “Your whole vibe is bad right now”

The scene Seungmin is greeted with when he fell asleep that night was the average chaotic squabble he’s become accustomed to his soulmate living with. He sees Jisung, which means that he’s using Chan’s view point that day. Which was fine by Seungmin, Chan tended to be less sporadic and quieter than the youngest of the three. The only problem with Chan is that the eldest liked to get close, liked to cuddle and was always laughing. Anyone that knew Seungmin  understood that he was not a touchy person to say the least. 

“I’m writing lyrics for your song Jisung” Changbin whined, throwing the pillow back at the youngest “Don’t insult my vibe.”

Chan’s viewpoint from the kitchen shows the two of them get into an all-out brawl with couch pillows being an apparent weapon of mass destruction in their already messy apartment. Chan laughs at them, genuinely amused by their antics. Seungmin had gathered that the three of them were like brothers – always together even before he started having his soulmate dreams.

They start when you turn 16. The night of your birthday you dream of your soulmate from the perspective of their closest friends. The first time he had dreamt of Changbin had been uncomfortably similar to the scene he saw that night. Seungmin was seeing Jisung trying to shove a handful of popcorn into Changbin’s mouth, some superhero movie playing in the background of what was later deduced to be Chan’s parents' living room. At the time seeing the carefree confidence of an older boy had almost terrified a 16 year old Seungmin – he knew he was almost the opposite. Hyunjin, who was his only real friend at the time, told him that he perpetually acted like a stick in the mud. Seeing Changbin laugh and wrestle one of his friends to the ground made him realize that Hyunjin was probably right.

Seungmin was taken out of his reverie of the past when the doorbell rang, and Chan’s attention was diverted from Changbin and Jisung’s duel, which annoyingly takes Seungmin away from watching his soulmate getting assaulted by throw pillows.

Yang Jeongin walked through the door, not waiting to be let in. Jeongin was their neighbor’s kid and as far as Seungmin could tell was the only person that was for a fact younger than him, walking around in his high school uniform half the time. Seungmin’s first impression when he’d seen the younger was that he was a cute kid – someone that would be like a fun younger brother. And then he discovered that Jeongin was an absolute brat and then he was sure that he would be exactly like a younger brother.

“Hey” Jeongin called “I’m here because Jisung promised to help me with my college applications”

“I really don’t think Jisung is the best person to help you with those” Is what Chan’s immediate response

They hear Jisung’s scandalized “Hey!” from the living room followed a soft thwack that one could only assume was Changbin nailing him with another pillow.

Jeongin laughs, adjusting his book bag on his shoulder as his face scrunches cutely “I mean you and Changbin can help me too, if you guys would like.”

Seungmin spent the rest of the dream ignoring what the four of them were actually talking about, allowing himself to just stare at his soulmate’s sharp focused features.

++

Seungmin found his friends gathered around a small table in the quad, their lunches strewn messily over the surface. All still in dance clothes from their shared class.

“I just don’t see why I shouldn’t” Felix was arguing, the food in his mouth pushed into one cheek

Minho rolled his eyes at the younger man “I just don’t see why you should, y’know, practically”

“It’s practical because” Felix paused to swallow his mouthful “There was a bet.”

“I say go for it” Hyunjin interjects “I don’t see why not either”

Seungmin sat down at the table without a word, only raising an eyebrow to inquire what kind of bet Felix made.

“Ok, so” Felix immediately jumps into explaining, words fast and a little jumbled “I have this friend in my calc class right, and he bet me that I couldn’t learn this tiktok dance by the next time I see him and I was like fuck you Jisung I’m a dancer so now I have to learn how to throw it back”

 Seungmin finds himself scrunching his brow “You already know Renegade-”

“Yeah but-” Felix tries to interrupt only for Seungmin to continue unperturbed

“I don’t see the harm in learning to ‘throw it back’ or whatever,” Seungmin shrugged, almost laughing at the varying degrees of shock on his friends faces.

Felix looks nothing short of ecstatic, Minho blinking rapidly at him with his hand frozen in its place holding a chip halfway to his mouth.

Hyunjin let out a flabbergasted laugh of “Kim Seungmin? Telling someone to throw it back?” he slammed him hand against the table with glee “What a fucking concept!”

“What?” Seungmin chuckled “I feel like I should be offended”

“No! No!” Felix jumped in excitedly “In fact Seungminnie, why don’t you learn with me?”

Seungmin coughed at that, taken slightly aback. He’s not a dancer, he was the only one in their friend group that didn’t have a single dance class in his college itinerary – let alone in his whole life “I don’t know”

“It’s an easy move” Felix presses

Truthfully, Seungmin doesn’t know what ‘throwing it back’ is. He doesn’t go on tiktok as often as the rest of his friends do. However, the way Felix smiles at him makes it absolutely impossible to say no, which pisses Seungmin off a little.

He sighs “Fine, I guess”

It vaguely registers that Hyunjin is laughing his ass off in the seat next to him and he wonders if that should worry him.

It takes exactly 3 minutes and 45 seconds for Seungmin to regret agreeing to this. Felix finished his lunch in record time, pulling up a tutorial on his phone as he’s scarfing down the other half of his sandwich and immediately pulled Seungmin out of his seat.

But Seungmin is nothing if not a man of his word, so he lets Felix tell him the best way to arch his back and move his hips. Minho records the whole thing on his phone. By the end of it all four of them are laughing and weirdly it’s the most fun he’s had in a long while.

“Way to go Seungmin!” Hyunjin wheezes “Showing the world that even a man with no ass can throw it back”

“Ha. Ha.” Seungmin laughed sarcastically despite his real amusement “You, of all people Hyunjin, should not be calling my ass flat”

Hyunjin’s face scrunches up in a way that makes the beauty mark under his eye disappear which only serves to make the other three laugh harder.

Felix’s alarm went off not long after telling him he has a class he needs to get to, which prompts Hyunjin to leave for his own classes, leaving Seungmin and Minho alone.

“You’re in a weird mood today,” Minho commented offhandedly “For you.”

Seungmin shrugs as he takes a seat across from the elder, folding his arms over the table surface “Is that a problem?”

“Nah I dig it,” Minho laughs “What’re you up to for the rest of the day?”

“I just finished my last class of the day,” he answers “So, studying I guess.”

The elder gave him a strange smirk.

Minho had always been a peculiar guy, kind of like an alien pretending to be a human. He’s friendly and overall pretty funny and easy to get along with despite what Hyunjin likes to say. But he’s always had this strange sort of way about him, nobody could quite wrap their head around Minho’s sense of humor or his overall demeanor for that fact. Seungmin liked the older man despite his weird tendencies.

Minho dragged him back to the apartment he shared with Hyunjin. It was smaller than his own but to Seungmin, Minho and Hyunjin’s apartment felt like a home. It was lived in and cozy – the opposite of his own overly large, mostly empty loft apartment that his parents pay for.

He moved some papers off the couch to sit as the elder man went into his kitchen.

“You want something to drink?” Minho offered, hollering to be heard through the wall separating the two rooms. 

“Whatever’s fine.”

He comes back with two cans of coke, handing one over unceremoniously.

It’s a little awkward for Seungmin because, despite thinking of Minho as a close friend, close enough for Changbin to probably be able to view him from the older man’s point of view, they don’t really hang out just the two of them. Hyunjin once described them as natural enemies, their personalities clashed just enough that they got on each other’s nerves more than anyone else, so being alone together is rarely on the table.

 “So,” Minho starts, smirk playing at his lips, “You think your soulmate can see you through me?”

Blunt. Minho was also so fucking blunt. Seungmin sputters a little at the question, letting out a strained laugh.

“Probably,” Is the answer Seungmin lands on “I only have three friends.”

Minho nods his head and then, “Damn! I wanted to ask you about him.”

It’s not really a taboo to talk about your soulmate but everyone can agree, more or less, that it’s a little awkward to do so when it's fully possible that the person you’re talking about could hear what you have to say about them. (Unless you’re Hyunjin, but that’s a story for another time)

Seungmin hummed, cracking the can of soda open and taking a sip, wondering if his soulmate really was listening then.

++

 This time Seungmin dreams from Jisung’s point of view, watching as Chan leaves to go off and hang out with his other friends.

Jisung tends to quiet down when it's just the two of them, Seungmin’s noticed. It’s like the more people there are around the louder he gets. So, it’s just Jisung and Changbin, both focused on their own respective homework. Seungmin knows that normally he’d be totally focused on the sharp slope of Changbin’s nose or something equally weird to stare at but he’s just so shocked because Jisung has a rather advanced math textbook in front of him and –

And Seungmin assumed that Jisung was an idiot.

After what’s probably been over an hour (It feels like 20 minutes because of how entranced he is by Jisung flying through his calculus homework) Changbin groans, and slams his own textbook shut. Jisung’s head jerked to look at the older man.

oh right – he should have been watching his soulmate.

“You wanna get some take out?” Changbin asks, head falling against the back of the couch with a little grin.

Jisung moved his homework to the side “Sure, what’re you feeling”

The two of them walk two blocks to a small sandwich shop and Seungmin tries so hard to figure out what part of town they’re in because it all seems so familiar, but he couldn’t  place it. That’s just how the dreams work because the universe just loves to make things harder than they need to be.

When they arrived Jisung shrunk  back a little at how crowded the sandwich shop is.

“It’s kind of busy, huh?” Changbin looked at his younger friend with a sympathetic smile, holding his hand out for comfort “You wanna go somewhere else?”

Seungmin’s shocked to see Jisung being so anxious around the large group of people considering his boisterous personality.  

Jisung shook his head though, grabbing Changbin’s hand and wrapping himself around his arm “I’m fine, just order for me please.”

Changbin chuckled softly “I got you.”

Seungmin woke up the next morning with a warm swell in his chest. And an awful realization that he learned way too much about Jisung.

++

Seungmin would say he’s pretty good at compartmentalizing his feelings. He’s good and dealing with his emotions for the most part. Sometimes though, you just have a bad day.

He had just finished taking a shower,  thinking it would help him calm down after an absolute shit day at school (It didn’t work), when he got a knock at his front door.

He swung the door open with a visible grimace, only to be greeted by the grinning face of his three friends.

“You texted Felix that you had a bad day,” Hyunjin explains “We’re here to comfort you.”

Seungmin feels his own face soften at the thoughtfulness, stepping aside to let the three of them in.

“I brought alcohol,” Minho adds, lifting up the grocery bag in his hand “If you’re up for it.”

Normally Seungmin isn’t the type to get drunk. In fact, he’s usually the sober one of the group, rounding the rest of their drunk asses up by the end of the night.

But he’s in a bad mood, so no one’s aloud to blame him for being the first to crack open one of the bottles Minho brought. It was a Friday anyways.

Felix blinked at him eyes wide as he poured himself a shot and downed it without a second thought, only pausing to hiss at the burn in the back of his throat. He almost wishes he had a chaser ready but it was too late for that.

“Oh,” Hyunjin laughs, taking the bottle and pouring the four of them each a fresh shot “This is a serious bad mood.”

They were piss drunk by 10pm. The four of them had migrated from the living room into the kitchen because, well Seungmin’s not really sure why, he was just following his friends. They sat on the kitchen floor in a circle, a small bowl of cherry tomatoes in the middle of them.

“- And my professor made it out like it was my fault that he lost my paper!” Seungmin could hear his own voice raising an octave, sounding horribly nasal the way it does when he’s not paying attention. Ranting to his friends about his awful day. He’s not really sure if any of them are paying attention to what he’s saying but it didn’t matter at that point he had to get this shit off his chest.

“That’s shitty.” Hyunjin sounded genuinely empathetic despite popping three tomatoes into his mouth at once.

“Dude you need to slow down, eating all those,” Seungmin tells him “You’ll make yourself puke”

Hyunjin shrugged “I know where the bathroom is.”

Minho hummed, taking a swig from the beer bottle he’d been nursing “Seungminnie,” he called, waiting for the younger’s attention “Tell us about your soulmate. You’re the only person I know that hasn’t said anything about their soulmate and I wanna know”

Quietly, from where he laid on his side, Felix starts singing Twice’s What Is Love “I wanna know know know know, what is love?” earning a loud giggle from Hyunjin.

Seungmin rolls his eyes but answers anyways “You wanna know about Changbin? Really?”

“Yeah!” Hyunjin perked up biting down on another tomato “Soulmate talk!”

If Seungmin were sober he’d have given just a vague answer of ‘his name’s Changbin, he’s older than me’ and left it at that. It had taken years of pestering for Hyunjin to get the information that he checks SoundCloud everyday in hopes of finding their hip hop group. But he’s the most drunk he’s ever been, so he finds himself letting it all out.

He grabbed the nearest beer bottle to him and took a huge gulp before starting “Changbin is so fucking nice! Like so nice? Even when his friends tease him, he just laughs along?” Seungmin learns that he’s a loud drunk, apparently “And he’s like-” He grabs his own bicep with an open palm for emphasis “Buff. Sexy. I don’t know he’s like super muscular and it's sexy” he’s on a roll now “And he’s – he’s so talented too! Talented and handsome.” And he finds himself gasping dramatically “You know who else is handsome and talented?”

Minho blinks at him chuckling a little “Who?”

“You three.” Seungmin tells him very seriously motioning around the room “You three are so handsome. Gorgeous. A bunch of pretty boys.  And talented and hardworking and funny-”

Hyunjin bolts up, scrambling out of the kitchen towards the bathroom, followed quickly by Felix.

“Do you need help?” Minho calls when they hear Hyunjin retching into the toilet

“I got him!” Felix hollered back

“And you guys never really listen to me because I told him that would happen,” Seungmin continues, “But that’s ok because I love you guys.”

Minho laughs at him raising his bottle in a quiet “Cheers to that.”

Then Seungmin frowns, eyebrows furrowing “And then there’s me.”

“What about you?”

“I’m just” Seungmin knocked his head back against the cabinet he’s been sitting with his back against “I’m just this stuck up asshole living off his daddy’s money!” he runs his hand down his face in frustration “I’m such a privileged fucking jerk with a constant stick up my ass! Minho! I have no good qualities!”

Instead of responding with comforting words, like a normal person would, Minho threw a cherry tomato at him hitting him square in the nose. Seungmin winced, staring at the older man in confusion. He just gets a smirk in response, before he tosses a different tomato into the air and catches it in his mouth. Seungmin’s drunk mind registers that as a challenge and never one to back down he grabs the tomato that was thrown at him off the ground and copies Minho, throwing the tomato into the air – only to miss his mouth completely and get an eyeful of fruit. Minho laughs at him, and it spurs Seungmin into his own fit of giggles.

Hyunjin and Felix come back shortly after, the former smelling like mouthwash as he sits down next to Seungmin, wrapping his arms around him.

“You’re so cute Seungminnie,” Hyunjin tells him, petting his air “My best friend is so cute.”

“What’s happening?” Seungmin shifted in the hold, confused by the sudden acts of affection

It only adds to his bewilderment when Felix plants himself on his other side, hugging him around the waist and nuzzling his nose into Seungmin’s neck.

“They’re drunk Seungmin, you know how they get” Minho grins, pulling out his phone to take a photo “You guys are cute”

Seungmin whined a little, but the contact wasn’t completely unwanted, so he didn’t really mind too terribly that his weak protests were ignored.

++

Seungmin dreams of Changbin surrounded by flashing lights and a screaming crowd. He sees Jisung jumping up and down on the other end of the stage, spurring the crowd’s cheers on, while Changbin spits a verse into his mic. The whole club filled with his soulmate’s rap.

The more he thinks about it the more he agrees with his drunk self–

Yep. Changbin is sexy. But Seungmin refuses to repeat that out loud while sober.

++

There’s  a flyer posted on the bulletin board just outside Seungmin’s economics class. He tries to ignore it whenever he passes by, but it never fails to catch his eye. It’s just a drawing of a Siracha bottle.

It's just a drawing of a Siracha bottle but - 

3racha the label says, at the bottom is written CB97, SpearB, J.One – and Seungmin feels like that should mean something to him every time he sees it. It pisses him off to no end not knowing why. He scowls at the flyer for far too long and he knows it. He can’t peel his eyes off this goddamn hot sauce drawing. Just when he’s about to move on and walk to his next class ,after he’s stopped to look at it the 5th time in a row, he notices in small letters near the top of the paper reading  ‘find us on SoundCloud!’.  Seungmin doesn’t think he has ever reached for his phone so quickly in his life.

He’s an idiot. How could he have never noticed it before? What the fuck?

++

“I seriously have to study tonight” Changbin was complaining loudly “Which sucks but it has to happen.”

This time around Seungmin could see both Jisung and Chan at the same time. It was the first time since he started having these dreams that it wasn’t from one of their perspectives. It threw him off.

“Boo” Jeongin’s voice rang out and – ok so it’s Jeongin that he was seeing through.

“It’s not like we were gonna do anything anyways” Chan offered kindly “It’s good that you’re worrying about your studies Binnie”

Jisung poked Changbin’s side, a mischievous grin on his face as he asked, “Since when has your soulmate been rubbing off on you?”

Changbin furrowed his brow “What do you mean?”

“He’s a nerd, isn’t he?” Jisung cocked his head to the side as if he seemed genuinely convinced that it wasn’t an insult “Doesn’t he spend most of your dreams studying?”

“He’s studious” Changbin frowned “There’s nothing wrong with being good at school”

Chan was staring at his younger roommates, carefully examining the situation like he would have to step in and stop a fight.

“He’s smart” Changbin continued with a huff “And witty and funny and has the cutest smile-”

Jisung threw his hands up in surrender “Ok I get it! I’m sorry I wasn’t trying to insult your man, Bin”

“Whatever.”

Jeongin was the first to burst out laughing at the embarrassed flush that washes over Changbin’s face.

++

Felix has a lot of friends. He has so many friends that sometimes Seungmin can’t bare to walk with him around campus because his Australian friend is always being stopped by somebody for a little small talk. Felix has a lot of friends, but it’s still a little surprising when he texts Seungmin that he’s bringing one  to have lunch with them. It’s a rarity for any of them to invite someone to spend time with their group. Felix says it’s the guy that dared him to learn how to throw it back and that he has to show him with witnesses – Seungmin doesn’t understand why they can’t do that before they come to lunch.

He gets to their table before Felix and the guest, nodding his greetings to Hyunjin and Minho as he sits down, taking one earbud out of his ear.

“Oh Seungminnie” Hyunjin grinned “Did you hear that Felix-”

Seungmin held up his own phone, cutting him off “Is bringing a friend? Yea”

“Let me talk,” Hyunjin whined “But yes that is what I was going to say.”

Seungmin laughed, shaking his head at the way Minho patted Hyunjin’s back to comfort him – absolutely no sympathy in his face.

Here’s the thing: Jisung is a common name. Seungmin has had a class with three separate Jisungs just this semester alone, it’s that common of a name. When Felix talks about his ‘friend Jisung’ he doesn’t bat an eye. It never once crossed his mind that Felix’s Jisung could be Changbin’s Jisung. It isn’t until he sees Felix walking across the quad with a familiar looking man in toe that Seungmin realizes that there were only so many Jisungs out there . Seungmin finds himself frozen in his spot as the one Jisung he didn’t expect walked up to his lunch table.

Felix greets them with a wide smile “Hey guys, this is my friend Jisung” He introduces “These are my friends Hyunjin, Minho and Seungmin”

“Hello! It’s nice to meet you” Jisung grins wide and if Seungmin didn’t know him so well from his dreams he would have come off as totally natural. Except Seungmin does know Jisung, and he can tell that he’s anxious as shit from the way his hands are stuffed in his hoodie pockets.

So, he finds himself sending a soft smile to Jisung that he hopes is welcoming enough despite his own throat going absolutely bone dry.

“Oh, I know you!” Minho exclaims “You’re Chan’s friend, right?”

“You know Chan?” Jisung perks up a little

Seungmin almost asks the same thing because – What the fuck?

Minho shrugs “I know Yugyeom, so by extension yeah.”

Seungmin busies himself with taking the lunch he bought from one of the restaurants on campus out of it's paper bag.

“You’re here for the bet, right?” Hyunjin tilts his head in curiosity

“Yes!” Jisung grins “Felix said he learned how to throw it back with his friend’s, so he brought me to you guys”

Minho snorts, shaking his head “That doesn’t make any sense, Yongbok”

Felix just rolls his eyes “I thought it would be more fun with more people”

“Seungmin’s the only one that learned with you” Hyunjin laughs

Seungmin’s friendly smile falls as he responds with “If you’re implying that I should ‘throw it back’ in front of someone I just met you’re gonna be disappointed”

“I’m surprised you even learned to be honest” Minho says, reaching over and snagging a chip from Seungmin’s lunch “Very out of character for you”

“Why’d you learn if you’re never going to utilize that skill?” Felix pouts at him, like he fully expected him to willingly go along with it.

Seungmin shoots a glare at him “To make you happy.”

Felix’s jaw dropped a little in surprise, which made Minho laugh smacking his hand on the table.

“You’re so cute Seungmin” Hyunjin moves towards him arms raising to hug him “Adorable”

Seungmin, to avoid his friend's impending affection, stands from his seat “I’m going to buy a drink” he states, gives a polite nod to Jisung, and walks towards the vending machines.

He doesn’t know what possesses him to buy everyone a drink while he’s there, maybe the sudden need to have Jisung like him, but he comes back with his arms full of cold cans. He’s embarrassed as he sets them down on the table while the other four are laughing about one of Felix’s stories.

He sits back down, cracking open one of the cans for himself casually ignoring the stares of confusion by nodding to the remaining drinks on the table “Take your pick, they’re all the same”

Hyunjin’s the first to grab one “Seungmin, I love you.”

Seungmin hummed, waving his hand in dismissal as a response as the rest of them moved to grab a drink.

“Thank you.” Jisung smiles at him “How much do I owe you?”

“Nothing,” Seungmin shook his head “Don’t worry about it.”

It’s nice having Jisung there with them. Seungmin is used to Jisung which is probably why he’s so willing to engage him easily. He’s loud and obnoxious and pretty damn funny despite the anxiety that’s visible behind his eyes. Fits right in.

Eventually, Felix’s phone alarm went off which led to Felix taking off followed by Hyunjin within minutes. Awkwardly, Jisung checks his own phone, letting out a frustrated sigh.

“You got a class to get to?” Minho inquired

“Not today” Jisung smiled, drumming his fingers against his thigh “My roommates asked me to go to the grocery store on my way home, is all.” he sounds nervous “I kinda hate going shopping by myself so…”

Seungmin really doesn’t know what possesses him but he finds himself saying “I need to do some shopping myself,” he bites the inside of his cheek and offers “I can go with you, if you’d like.”

It’s not a lie. He really does need to pick up some groceries. So, he lets the offer stand and he can’t tell if it makes Jisung more or less anxious.

But Jisung nods his head nonetheless “Sure, why not?” he says.

Minho accompanies them to the store, because he ‘has nothing better to do’. Which is fine, Seungmin is probably more himself with the elder being there anyways. Jisung makes him nervous because he’s a direct connection to his soulmate and Seungmin couldn’t find the words to bring it up. He could at the very least get on his good side.

Seungmin hates going shopping with other people though, makes him feel bad. He watches Jisung compare prices and he’s reminded that not everyone is as well off as him. He looks at what’s marked down also, not because he needs to but because maybe he could help the other get better deals while Minho wanders off into the cereal aisle.

“Chicken breasts are on sale” He points out, “If your roommates like chicken” and he knows they do, the three of them eat it once a week.

“Oh!” Jisung puts the beef he was looking at back in its place “That’s great!”

Seungmin, glad he writes his grocery lists in his phone notepad, follows Jisung around the store grabbing whatever he may need along the way. Jisung seems shocked at his choice of grabbing the more expensive option of a few of the products but Seungmin only shrugs in response.

Minho finds the two of them in the bakery section, holding nothing but a box of cereal in his hands.

“Where have you been?” Seungmin chuckles

Minho grinned “Hyunjin’s almost out of his favorite cereal”

“So you’re getting him more?” Seungmin frowned at the nod he gets in return “That’s sweet of you”

“I’ve been eating it in secret” Minho continues

“Ah, makes sense” Seungmin, pauses “Put it in my basket I’ll pay for it”

Minho hands the box over without a second thought, as he walks over to Jisung to ask what he’s buying. Jisung jumps at being addressed, peeling his eyes away from staring at the cheesecake display.

Seungmin has a clear memory from a few years ago, where he dreamt of Changbin and Chan trying to bake Jisung a cheesecake for his 17th birthday because it was his favorite. They failed miserably in the end, but it had made the three of them laugh and Seungmin considers it the one of the first things that made him genuinely fall in love with his soulmate. He finds himself striding over to the display and grabbing one of the single piece boxes and gently places it in his basket.

“Ready to check out?” he asks and Jisung nods his head shuffling away from the display with disappointment in his eyes.

“Your cereal, Minho” Seungmin fishes out the cardboard box from his bags once they’re out of the store and hands it to his older friend “And Jisung,” he reaches in and grabs the cake holding it out “Cheesecake for you”

Jisung’s eyes go wide as he blinks at the box presented to him “No I couldn’t take that” he shakes his head in denial

“I bought it for you” Seungmin grins playfully “If you don’t take it, it’s going in the trash”

“But-”

“It’s your favorite right?” Seungmin continues “I saw you eyeing it in the store and if you can afford to, you should indulge in your favorite things.” He shrugs “I can afford to buy this kind of thing, don’t worry about it”

Jisung takes the box, obviously still reeling from the gift “Thank you?”

Seungmin smiles

Minho, being who he is laughs out a “Oh, I do love seeing you use daddy’s money for good”

Seungmin smacks the elder man in the arm “I said the words ‘daddy’s money’ to you once, when I was drunk,” he whines a little “Leave me alone.”

++

Seungmin dreams of Jisung eating that cheesecake that night.

“Did you buy yourself cake?” Chan asks when he and Changbin walk through the door “You know we can’t afford-”

“It was a gift” Jisung cuts him off “I made a friend today, he bought it for me”

Changbin smiles at him, pride simmering in his eyes “Oh yeah?”

“Well,” Jisung shrugs “A friend of a friend but you know. A future friend of sorts.”

++

Seungmin hates his statistics class. Hates it to the point that he ignores it until the last minute possible and then crams. It’s the only class he isn’t good at keeping up with.

So, if he doesn’t look up from his notes when Felix and Jisung sit with him it’s not him purposefully ignoring them. They don’t seem to mind though, idly chatting with each other.

It takes him five minutes before he slams his notebook closed groaning out “Fuck it. I’m winging the test.”

Felix eyes furrow at the remark “That’s unlike you. You ok, mate?”

“I’m tired of studying,” Seungmin whines “I’m done.”

“You’re done studying?” Jisung blinked at him, cocking his head slightly “I thought you were a nerd?”

Seungmin cleared his throat, this was the second time Jisung had called him that “I’m studious.” he says instead of taking offense.

“Whoa, Deja vu” Jisung gave him a weird look “I feel like I’ve had this conversation before.”

Seungmin doesn’t respond, only moving to shove his notebook into his book bag.

“Are you pissed at statistics again?” Felix pipes up

“Oh Statistics” Jisung grins “I’m great at statistics!”

And Seungmin doesn’t doubt it, having seen Jisung fly through his calculous homework firsthand.

“Like did you know” Jisung continues “4/5 students wish they had my handsome face?”

That’s the most on brand joke Jisung had made to him in person and he laughs. He laughs loud and hard at that. It’s not the funniest joke he’s heard from him, but it shows that he’s comfortable with him now.

“Yeah ok Jisung,” Seungmin shook his head, giggles still racking through him “If you say so.”

“Well, even if you’re not good at statistics you’re good at other things.” Felix grinned

“Oh yeah?” Seungmin snorts “Like what”

Felix blinks at him “Studying?”

Seungmin motions at him, threatening to hit him

“You seem like you’d be good at reading people,” Jisung says “Here, tell about my personality.”

Felix, without missing a beat exclaims “Narcissist!”

Which makes all three of them laugh again.

Seungmin’s watch vibrates, which signals that he has to get to class distracting him just enough that he ends up actually telling Jisung his thoughts.

“You’re incredibly smart,” he mumbles, standing up and throwing his bag over his shoulder “But you act stupid as a coping mechanism to hide your anxiety and insecurities,” he turns on his heel to leave “I gotta get to class.”

As he walks away, he hears Jisung cough out a “What the fuck?”

++

Changbin has been sending weird looks to Jisung for over a week now. Seungmin sees the stares, sees the questions forming on his soulmate’s lips only to die on his tongue. Seungmin knows why in every dream he has Changbin struggles to hold conversations with Jisung. He would feel bad about being the cause of the elder’s struggles except he was going through very similar emotions everyday he sees Jisung.

Jisung doesn’t even notice. Which is hilarious to Seungmin in a sick kind of way.

Eventually, Changbin approaches Jisung sitting next to him uncomfortably  on the couch

“So,” he cleared his throat “Tell me about these friends you’ve made.”

Jisung’s an introvert, never had a lot of friends Seungmin knows. It’s not shocking that Chan and Changbin would be curious about him joining a group so suddenly.

“You wanna meet them?” Jisung responds “I usually have lunch with them in the quad around 1, if you’re free”

Seungmin is just as shocked as Changbin looks.

++

Seungmin doesn’t go to school the next day.

He doesn’t know why he’s throwing away an opportunity like this. Changbin was going to be right there. That morning though, he woke up with a churning in his stomach that before he even has time to put his glasses on his face he has to rush into his bathroom to vomit.

Seungmin doesn’t know why his body decides that today, of all days, is the perfect time to make him sick.

He pulls himself into the shower, feeling sweaty and disgusting. Crawling back into bed the moment he puts on new pajamas.

He feels like absolute shit the whole day, either throwing his guts up or burying himself under blankets on his bed. It’s not until after 7pm and Hyunjin’s waltzing through his front door that Seungmin realizes the whole day has gone by.

His best friend finds him sitting on his bathroom floor, forehead pressed against the cool porcelain of his bathtub.

“You look like shit.” Hyunjin frowns, eyebrows creased with worry. “You’re sick?”

Seungmin lifts his head just long enough to shoot his friend a pained look before he lowers it down again “What do you want?” His voice is rough and a little pathetic.

Hyunjin takes a seat on the floor next to him, rubbing his back comfortingly “Minho made you soup.”

Seungmin wonders if he could stomach it. He had tried to eat something around noon, but it ended only making things worse for him.

“We met one of Jisung’s roommates today,” Hyunjin tells him, talks to distract him “Stopped by our table during lunch. He was nice.”

“I bet he was cute.” Seungmin mumbles, not bothering to filter himself in his weakened state “Was he?”

“Was he-” Hyunjin squints “You’re asking me if he’s cute?”

“Yeah.”

Hyunjin stumbles over his words for a minute “I- I guess? A little short but-” and then he frowns “Are you ok?”

“I’m fucking fantastic” Sarcasm drips from his voice “I totally didn’t miss my chance to meet my soulmate today or anything.”

Hyunjin makes a choking sound in response

“That’s a secret” Seungmin presses, trying to make himself sound firm. “Don’t tell anyone”

++

It's bizzare for Seungmin to see his own friends in his dreams. To see Changbin greet them, to see him scan their faces like he knows them. It almost hurts to see a look of disappointment flash across his face for a brief moment.

“Seungmin’s not here?” Jisung asks

Minho shakes his head “He hasn’t answered any texts all day”

“Is he sick?” Felix sounds worried

“Seungmin doesn’t get sick” Hyunjin jumps in “I’ve known him since we were 13 and he’s gotten sick exactly once in all that time”

Changbin looks like he doesn’t know what to say, just comments “Well, it’s too bad I couldn’t meet him today either way…”

 To make it worse, After that missed lunch there’s  even more instances where they just miss each other by mere minutes.

Changbin runs into their group just after Seungmin leaves for a class.

Seungmin sees Jisung at a café moments after Changbin runs off to get to work on time.

Changbin’s even runs into Minho, making small talk and breaking away just as Seungmin spots his friend from across the pathway .

The universe was making them play a game of cat and mouse and frankly Seungmin was tired of it.

++

Seungmin’s just stepping out from his last class of the day, backpack heavy on his shoulder when he hears his name being yelled from down the hall.

Felix runs up to him in a hurry, obviously flustered “Seungmin oh god I’m glad I ran into you!”

Seungmin blinks in surprise, placing his hands on the other’s shoulders “Whoa, what’s wrong?”

“Jisung forgot his notebook in our calculus class” he rushes out, holding up the notebook in question “I have classes till late tonight and he’s already gone home so I need you to get this to him for our test tomorrow.”

Felix gives him the notebook and Jisung’s address before he runs off for his next class, not even waiting for Seungmin to agree to doing the favor.

It doesn’t register that Jisung lives with Changbin until he’s already knocked on the front door. He stares at his own hand as he processes what he just did, suddenly feeling sweaty and nervous. It’s a much cheaper apartment building than his own, but he was already accustomed to the environment. Almost felt like home. Panic seizes him as he hears the locks being undone and the front door starts sliding open.

He’s greeted by Chan, giving him a curious look “Can I help you?”

“Um. Hi.” Seungmin grimaces, shifts in his spot uncomfortably “Is Jisung here?”

 “Yeah, hold on” Chan blinks and then calls into the apartment “Hey Ji, you have a guest.”

Jisung comes careening towards the door faster than Seungmin was prepared for, suddenly having his friend skidding to a stop in front of him.

“Seungmin! What’re you doing here?” He’s smiling wide

Seungmin shifts in his spot again, holding the notebook out “Felix said you left your book in class and asked me to bring it to you.”

Jisung blinked, face falling as he stares at him “Dude I could kiss you right now.”

“Don’t.”

Which Jisung laughs at, nodding his head as he took the book “Come in for a minute?”

And despite his hesitance, he can’t pass up the opportunity presented to him.

He lets Jisung pull him into the small apartment and introduce him to Chan. Seungmin almost laughs at himself for having to pretend to not know anything about the elder. He however does make himself comfortable rather quickly, sitting himself in the spot on the couch Changbin tends to favor. The room somehow seems smaller and messier in person.

“Our other roommate’s at work right now” Jisung pouts as he sits next to him on the couch “Which is too bad because you missed meeting him earlier this month when everyone else did.”

Seungmin hummed, a little disappointed but mostly relieved that he didn’t have to meet his soulmate so thoughtlessly “Well,” he says trying to sound comforting “I’m the only one that’s met Chan, so it’s even”

Chan comes into the living room with a glass of water for each of them, and Jisung launches into telling a story about how recently he and Hyunjin had ended up almost being kicked out of the library the one time they hung out alone because they couldn’t stop laughing.

“I swear” Jisung says, waving his hands as he spoke “I love him now, but I swear if I met him like three years ago, I would have hated him”

Chan shakes his head in amusement “I’m sure that’s not true”

“No that sounds about right” Seungmin finds himself giggling “If you two knew each other three years ago he absolutely would have throttled you on sight”

Seungmin would know better than anybody how accurate that statement was. He remembers  how Jisung used to be and he knows what his best was like. They would have beat the shit out of each other had they met any sooner than they did. He sees Jisung’s brow crease in confusion, but neither mention it.

++

Seungmin dreams of Chan telling Changbin that Jisung had a friend over.

“Oh really?” Changbin grinned, obviously excited that his younger friend is expanding his social circle “Which friend?”

“The one you haven’t met yet” Jisung answers, absentmindedly scrolling through his phone “Seungmin”

The look on Changbin’s face would have had Seungmin rolling from laughing if he’d seen it in person.

“I’m going to shower” Changbin says, quickly escaping to the bathroom.

++

“Let’s play a game” Minho has that mischievous glint in his eyes that makes Seungmin weary

Felix perked up at that though, casting his notes to the side “What kind of game”

Seungmin sighed, turning the volume on his music down

“Jisung has to tell a secret”

“That doesn’t sound like a game” Hyunjin frowns a little, shutting his own notebook

Minho laughed nodding his head at Jisung, “Sure it is. We don’t have any secrets in our group, it’s like initiation”

“I have plenty of secrets” Seungmin says, removing one of the ear buds from his ears letting the 3racha song keep playing softly in only one ear “Minho, you’re being vaguely threatening”

“Then you have to tell us a secret too Seungmin”

“I mean, I don’t mind sharing something” Jisung chuckled scratching the back of his head “Just, anything?”

“Anything”

Hyunjin waved his hands slightly “Whatever you’re comfortable sharing”

Jisung acts like he’s thinking about it, despite obviously already having an answer at the tip of his tongue “Oh I know,” he smiles “I make music with my other friends”

“Are you guys any good?” Felix asks, eyes sparkling with interest. 

Jisung pauses, moving his hand in a so-so movement “I’d like to think so but it's all relative to the person.”

“You’ll have to let us listen to a song as soon as Seungmin shares one of his secrets he apparently has.” Minho grins, turning to the youngest at the table expectantly.

“Well, since Jisung shared that he makes music,” Seungmin hums, pulling his phone out from his pocket and unplugging his earbuds “I’ll share the music group I’ve been listening to recently.” He looks up and makes eye contact with Jisung as he turns up his volume “You might know them, Jisung.” he smirks as he presses play on the song he was in the middle of listening to.

He watches as Jisung’s jaw drops when Chan’s voice echoes through his phone’s speaker with ‘you what, mate? You can’t stop us. Pick up the pace

“This doesn’t sound like your normal taste in music Seungmin” Hyunjin comments over the sound of the synthetic bass of the song.

Seungmin shrugs, a smile still tugging at the corners of his mouth as he mouths ‘pick up the pace’ along with the song, bouncing his eyebrows teasingly.

Jisung just stared at him, even with his own voice rapping a verse in the background. The two of them make intense eye contact until the song ends.

“That’s not your normal taste in music Seungmin” Hyunjin repeats

“I know” Seungmin blinks, shrugs at his best friend again “But it’s fun isn’t it?”

“Well, I liked it” Felix reaches for Seungmin’s phone to see the artist “3racha?”

“Yeah, you wanna know why they’re called that?” Seungmin laughs, taking his phone back “Because they’re hot”

Jisung looks like he can’t decide if he should be laughing or in complete shock.

“Ok, now for Jisung’s music” Hyunjin moves them along. 

Jisung jumped a little at the mention of his name “I don’t have to pull up my music” he tilts his head a little to the side “Seungmin just played one of our songs.”

“He did not” Minho chuckles in disbelief

“No! he did!” Jisung insists “Play another”

Seungmin smiles “Any requests?”

“Anything works.”

Seungmin snorted “I know your songs, Jisung you shouldn’t tell me whatever”

“What do you mean?” Jisung’s brow furrows in confusion “Any song will work.”

Seungmin shoots him a serious look as he says, “Excuse me, miss, do you have a boyfriend?” in deadpan already scrolling to find the song in question

Jisung bristles “No! I take it back! Don’t play Wow,” reaching to wrestle the phone away from him.

Seungmin laughs, holding his phone out of reach as Jisung moves closer, whining as the song starts blaring loudly. The older man screams at his own voice starting the song, blush sweeping over his face quickly from embarrassment.  

They calm down after his verse ends, despite his disdain for the rest of the song as well.

“So, you listen to 3racha” Jisung inquires, blinking at him with a sparkle in his eyes

Seungmin nods “Unfortunately”

“How’d you even find us?” He asks, eyes sparkling 

Seungmin licks his lips “Saw a flyer” 

“What do you like about our music?” Jisung seems so damn excited that someone listens to them

There’s plenty to like about their songs, they’re deep and emotional, they talk about important issues, they’re lyrically brilliant and melodically interesting. But that’s not what he ends up saying.

What escapes his mouth is “I vibe.”

It makes Jisung laugh at the very least, so it can’t have been the worst answer in the world.

(Seungmin however does do a terrible Changbin impression after the rest of their friends left the two of them to go to their dance class. A simple ‘yoooh’ making Jisung fall to the ground in a fit of giggles)

++

Jisung’s calculus homework is the first thing Seungmin sees when he dreams.  Jisung looks up at the jiggle of the door handle, Changbin walking into their apartment.

“Hey,” Changbin looked tired and haggard from his day

Jisung waved, moving a few of his things from the couch to the coffee table to make room for the elder to sit with him “You look like crap, Bin”

Changbin barked out a laugh “Yeah, long day for me” he rubbed the back of his head “How was your day?”

“Good!” Seungmin could hear the smile in Jisung’s voice “I found out that Seungmin listens to 3racha, so I had a fun conversation with him”

Changbin hummed “Oh yeah? That’s good” he smiled widely “Tell me about him”

“About Seungmin?” Jisung cocked his head, earning a nod “He’s kind of mean but in a funny way, you know? He played Wow and it was torture.” He laughs “he’s super generous too, bought me lunch a few times, and he’s – well he says he’s studious, but I think he’s just a nerd”

Changbin listens intently and it – It embarrasses Seungmin to be hearing all this again

“Actually-” Jisung pauses, Seungmin could only imagine the way Jisung’s brows creased “This sounds familiar.”

“Does it?” Changbin chuckled, resting his chin against his hand – he looks so damn smug

Seungmin could almost feel the wheels turning in his friend’s brain as he stares at Changbin.

“What did you say your soulmate’s name was?” Jisung asks after what feels like an eternity of silence

Changbin bites his lip “I haven’t told you my soulmates name.” he sounds so fucking amused

Jisung moves closer, leaning into Changbin’s personal space “Tell me.”

Changbin leans back and laughs, his nose scrunching up and Seungmin’s momentarily distracted by just how stunning his soulmate looks in that moment.

“I’m sure you’ve already figured it out at this point” Changbin chuckles, “you know it’s weird viewing the world through your eyes?”

“Fuck!”

++

Seungmin somehow got roped into being a tour guide by a few of his professors. The job was supposed to be easy, just walk around his university campus with a group of high school seniors following him around as he introduces them to a few advisors that are designated to discuss their department with them. Which is fine except Seungmin is only a freshman in college and he’s not sure why he of all people was chosen to do this shit.

Nonetheless he agrees to the job.

The tours start at 10AM but Seungmin shows up 45minutes early to make sure he’s prepared. He doesn’t so much mind waking up so early, but he does find it a little awkward that he’s the first guide to show up. He was told to be there early, but he supposes that 9:15 is a little much. He’s handed a small packet of papers, one that has the names of the students he’ll be guiding, one that gives him the days schedule, and a few that give him the information he’s supposed to be reading off during the tour. At least he’s got ample time to review as he sits under the sign that designated where the guides are. He stuck a green sticker on his shirt for his group to find him as he started reading.

Seungmin finds himself staring at his list of names. Yang Jeongin is in his group.

Jeongin is another common name, but Seungmin’s already been caught off guard by one of Changbin’s friends showing up. This time He’s assuming that it’s the Jeongin he knows, just to be safe.

He’s only showing around nine students he realizes. There’s a lot fewer than he expected, and he almost feels like it’s a waste of his time. He plasters his best fake smile as he sees the group with green stickers start making their way towards him.

He introduces himself to the group and – he’s glad he was prepared for the Jeongin he knows to be in the group as he makes eye contact with a younger boy.

He watches as Jeongin stares at him, eyes a little wide, like he knows who is. Seungmin thinks this could be fun after all.

Seungmin goes out of his way to make eye contact with the younger. Makes sure to pay extra attention to what Jeongin’s doing. He wants Jeongin to know he knows something.

“Kim Seungmin!” he hears his name being yelled an hour into the tour.

He turns his head to be greeted by Jisung barreling down the steps of the building they had just left themselves. He stops the group, letting his friend catch up to them.

“Dude” Jisung plants his hands on Seungmin’s shoulders, slightly out of breath “We have to talk.”

He almost laughs at the seriousness of his tone “It’ll have to wait,” he motions to his group “I’m doing something.”

Jisung blinks at the group in surprise “Jeongin?”

“Jisung?” Jeongin’s brows furrow in confusion “Hey.”

While the group is distracted by asking their classmate how he knows this random man, Seungmin turns to talk to his friend.

“I’m guiding a tour,” Seungmin sighs. “I don’t think we need to talk. I already know what you know.”

Jisung bites his lip “I’ll join you for the tour then.”

“Why?” Seungmin snorts “It’s boring.”

“That’s why, I figure I can make it more fun and I don’t have another class for like three hours.” Jisung shrugs “Also I’m a good resource for scholarship questions.”

Ah, Seungmin almost forgot that Jisung had a full ride scholarship.

He has to admit though, it is a lot more fun to have Jisung follow him around. His commentary makes the script that Seungmin was following a lot more engaging. The second hour of the tour moves a lot faster, which he’s grateful for since his only form of entertainment was trying to intimidate Jeongin.

He ends the tour in the courtyard, telling the teens where the restaurants are so they could go buy themselves lunch.

Jisung pulls Jeongin over to the bench Seungmin had collapsed on as soon as he dismissed the group.

“I’m introducing you two properly” Jisung plants himself next to him, throwing his legs over Seungmin’s lap “Since you’re both my friends” he pulls the youngest down into the seat on the other side of him “Jeongin, Seungmin,” he motions between the two “Seungmin, Jeongin.”

They smile politely at each other, ducking their heads in greeting. Jisung starts talking because that’s what he does when there’s an awkward silence. He talks and talks until Jeongin interrupts him.

“Hey Ji,” Jeongin cuts in politely “I still need to buy lunch”

Jisung frowns “Yeah I’m pretty hungry now that you mention it”

Seungmin sighs reaching for his wallet “Go order whatever you guys want,” he hands his credit card to Jisung “just bring me back something too.”

Jeongin’s eyes widen as Jisung takes the card and carefully shoves it in his pocket, already used to this treatment.

Jisung grins, standing up “I could kiss you.”

“Don’t.” Seungmin rolls his eyes

Jeongin moves to follow him only to be pushed back down

“No, no.” Jisung orders already walking away “You two have to have a conversation while I’m gone.”

Jeongin smiles politely at him, shifting uncomfortably “So,”

“So, Felix, huh?” Seungmin says

Jeongin’s smile drops from his face, eyes once again going wide as he stares.

“You’re awful at hiding that you recognize me” Seungmin shrugs “it’s written all over your face.”

“How’d you know it was Felix?” Jeongin tries to smile but he just looks weary.

“Power of deduction.”

 The younger tilts his head curiously.

I only have four friends. You’re friends with one of them.” he nods his head in the direction that Jisung ran off in “Felix is the only other one of them that hasn’t found his soulmate” Seungmin explains.

“You can’t blame me for having a bad poker face, ” Jeongin chuckles “I thought I was good at it since Ji hadn’t figured it out yet.”

“It took Jisung four months to figure out his roommate is my soulmate” Seungmin snorted “Literally just found out last night because he was told.” he didn’t mean to reveal that, especially because he’s seen through the younger’s eyes before and that’s – weird.

Jeongin’s smile twitches, like he’s trying to hold it in place “Which roommate?”

Seungmin bites the inside of his cheek “Changbin.”

“You’re Changbin’s soulmate?” Jeongin laughs in his face “Changbin’s? Really?”

“What?”

“Nothing,” Jeongin breathes, only to erupt into more giggles, “You just don’t seem like each other’s types is all.”

Seungmin wants to refute him, wants to tell him he’s wrong but he’s not. He looks at his own lap and he’s wearing slacks of all things to school. Jeongin’s right, they don’t seem like they’d be a fit. He frowns, unsure of how to respond.

“Well,” Jeongin says “Opposites do attract.”

Seungmin hums in response, resting his chin against the palm of his hand. He sees Jisung scurrying back, arms full of bags from the burger place from inside the building.

“Isn’t that too much?” Jeongin asks when he’s in hearing distance “It’s someone else’s card.”

“It’s fine” Jisung waves him off digging through one of the bags

“How can you say that?” Jeongin sounds genuinely distressed “Jisung, it’s not your money!”

Jisung makes eye contact with Seungmin, the two smirking at each other.

“It’s daddy’s money” Jisung shrugs casually

Seungmin snorts. It’s become a running joke in their group at that point.

“Sounds so wrong” Jeongin shakes his head, as he accepts one of the burgers being handed to him

Jisung laughs at that “Seungmin is my sugar daddy.”

“Ew,” Seungmin wrinkles his nose in disgust “Don’t call me that.”

Jeongin goes to join his classmates after a few more minutes, leaving the two of them alone.

“I seriously think we need to talk.” Jisung mumbles shoving the food into his cheeks “It’s important.”

Seungmin deflates, “Do we?”

“You know that I’m friends with your soulmate,” Jisung’s voice is taut “And you haven’t said anything?”

Seungmin licks his lips glaring down at his own lunch “I didn’t know how to bring it up.” He shrugs “Changbin didn’t say anything to you either!”

Jisung takes a deep breath, like he’s frustrated “I could have hooked you guys up”

“You could have,” Seungmin agrees “But the one time you invited him to meet the rest of us I got sick. I don’t think the universe would let us meet with a setup”

“But-” he cuts himself off “I don’t think it's fair for you two.”

Seungmin shrugs again “Life’s not fair” he chews his lip “We’ll meet when the timing’s right.”

++

The clock on the wall read 3AM and Seungmin knew immediately that he was seeing Chan’s workload in front of him. The elder man has always had bad insomnia, with the addition of being a workaholic. It was a familiar sight to see Chan up at that hour. Usually it meant seeing Changbin asleep nearby.

That night however his soulmate stood in the kitchen brewing a pot of coffee despite Chan’s protests.

“Seriously, go to bed Bin” Chan called, fingers drumming against the coffee table in their living room “It’s late”

Changbin shuffled into the living room, steaming mug in hand and teasing eyebrow raised “I know it’s late, that’s why I’m here” he takes his seat on the couch “I know you get lonely when you can’t sleep like this”

Seungmin thinks that his soulmate is too kind. He loves his friends so much that he’ll destroy his sleep schedule so one won't be lonely. He’ll put his own matters second if it makes things better for others. Seungmin doesn’t think he’s a generally bad person but comparatively, Changbin is too good of a person.

Too good for him possibly.

 It’s a chill night, the two of them just existing in the same space – music playing softly in the background as they worked on their own things. Changbin goes through at least two pots of coffee, somehow still falling asleep before Chan does.  

++

Seungmin doesn’t invite his friends over. Hyunjin decides that it would be a good idea for everyone to hang out and extends the invitation to go to Seungmin’s apartment without asking first. Which is fine, because he does have the biggest apartment and it's always clean.

Seungmin doesn’t invite them over but they’re coming over anyway. So, he unlocks his front door, grabs the nerf gun Hyunjin bought him when they were 15 out from under his bed, texts them to just come in when they get there and hides just out of sight of the front door.

It doesn’t even take ten minutes before he hears Felix and Jisung’s voices outside his door, the doorknob jiggling as they enter. He waits just long enough for Felix to shoot Jisung a puzzled look before he jumps out.

He jolts out from around the corner, getting off two shots one of which hits Felix square in the shoulder and the other foam bullet zinging past Jisung’s head and bouncing uselessly off the front door behind them. 

The two both jump in surprise, Jisung makes a small squeak as he shrinks in on himself and Felix does the opposite by letting out a loud ‘Ack!’ and flinging himself backwards.

Motherfucker!” Felix gasps, finding himself leaning against the wall clenching his fists “I hate when you do that.”

Seungmin cracks up, laughter erupting from deep in his stomach as he drops the nerf gun on the table he keeps his keys on by the door. It’s been a while since the last time he’d pulled any sort of prank. “You fall for it every time” he teases shoving is hands in his hoodie pockets

Jisung looks between the two, his face contorted in confusion “This is normal?”

Seungmin is still chuckling as he motions for the two of them to come father into his apartment.

“Oh yeah, Seungmin plays the most pranks out of anyone” Felix says “Just be glad you’re not Hyunjin, otherwise you’d never shower in peace.”

Jisung makes a confused noise at that but he’s immediately distracted by the expanse of the apartment, jaw dropping a little in awe. It’s not a penthouse by any means, Seungmin would know he lived in one with his family, but it is still quite sizable with high ceilings and more than enough room for all his needed furniture – too much room. His home always felt empty and too pristine.

“You live here?” Jisung asks instead. “Like for real?”

Felix busies himself with turning on the game station set neatly on the TV stand.

Seungmin sighed “Yeah.”

Jisung sits on the couch next to Felix – who hands him one of the two controllers as some game starts loading on the screen. Jisung looks at Seungmin, inquiring if he wants to play first only to be waved off.

They play the game for a few hours, chatting and arguing and not really paying much attention to anything until they start to get hungry.

“When were Hyunjin and Minho supposed to get here?” Felix complains “I wanna eat soon.”

Seungmin hums, pulling his phone out to check his messages where he finds a text from Minho saying that the two of them had to do some unexpected errands and not to expect them until after 7PM. He glances at the clock – 5:18.

“Not for a few more hours.” He pockets his phone “We should grab dinner without them”

“Oh, I know a place with good sandwiches,” Jisung says, setting his controller down on the coffee table “It’s not too far from here.”

“Sounds good to me” Felix nods

‘Not too far’ ends up meaning almost exactly halfway between Seungmin and Jisung’s apartments, just off the university’s campus. Seungmin recognizes as soon as they step through the restaurant’s front door as it being the one Jisung goes to with Changbin and Chan when they can afford to. It’s crowded again, and Seungmin’s not surprised because they went during the dinner rush.  Next to him he sees Jisung’s shoulders stiffen slightly at the sight of all the people in the room. Without thinking Seungmin reaches out and intertwines their fingers without a word. Jisung blinks at him in surprise only to be greeted with a level look in response.  They recieve a look from Felix for a moment, presumably feeling left out, before he hooks his arm around Jisung’s free one.

Seungmin finds himself staring at the menu posted on the wall behind the counter while the other two complain about their shared class to each other. He doesn’t pay attention to his surroundings, barely even registering that someone walks through the front door behind him.

It’s not until Jisung is twisting his body around with an “Oh, Chan!” that Seungmin tears his eyes away from the board.

He turns his own head to look at the elder man who, in all fairness, seems rather surprised to see them there. Chan smiles as he moves to join the three of them in line. Jisung introduces Felix to the older, normal small talk, and Seungmin almost spaces back out to look at the menu again.

“Where were you when I left?” Jisung asked “I didn’t see you all day.”

Chan chuckles “I was asleep to be honest.” rubbing the back of his neck in embarrassment he continues “Binnie and I both just got up about an hour ago.”

Seungmin has to bite his tongue to keep from telling him it’s their own fault for drinking coffee until five in the morning.

“Oh?” Jisung frowns, glancing quickly at Seungmin then back “Where is Changbin now then?”

Chan shrugged “He ran into a friend on the way here, he said he’d catch up in a minute, I figured I’d order for the both of us while I wait for him.”

“He’s coming here then?” Jisung asks, squeezes his hand in excitement when he gets a nod of confirmation.

Seungmin doesn’t know how he feels.

He’s excited. He’s definitely excited because he finally gets to meet his soulmate after years of dreaming about him – years of seeing him through his best friend’s eyes and letting himself fall in love. But somehow, he’s nervous. He’s not sure he’s ready to meet the other. He squeezes Jisung’s hand back, nonetheless.

They move up in line and Seungmin steps forward to order for himself (also getting a sandwich for Hyunjin and Minho, in case they don’t eat before coming over later in the night)  He lets Felix and Jisung order for themselves ,then turning to Chan.

“What about you?” he asks

Chan gives him a confused stare before his eyes widen “Oh no I’m ordering separately.”

“Nope.” Jisung says “He and Bin usually get the number 3 and number 5 ,respectively”

“Great,” Seungmin turns to the cashier ordering those as well. He hands his credit card over before the eldest of them can protest.

Seungmin finds an empty table for the four of them to sit at while the other three go to fill their cups in the soda fountain. He can see Chan berating Jisung for telling him their orders and letting him pay for them, but Felix and Jisung just laugh at his concern. He watches them until they make their way to the table he’s sitting at, chuckles a little as Jisung sits himself on Felix’s lap mumbling something about having to keep a seat open for when Changbin joins them – as if he needed an excuse to sit on any of their laps.

“Thank you for paying, by the way” Chan smiles at him gratefully, his dimple denting his face  “I appreciate it”

Seungmin dismisses him easily, “Don’t worry about it,” he stands up “I’m gonna go fill my cup.”

He hears it more than anything, between the time he leaves the table and gets to the soda fountain, someone enters the restaurant and is immediately called over to his table.

“Bin!” Chan’s voice rings out and it takes all of Seungmin’s willpower not to whip his head around and stare.

He steadies himself, taking a deep breath and continues his mission to get himself a drink. Everything is fine. He’s in the same room as his soulmate, and it’s fine. He really shouldn’t be freaking out as much as he is. If he listens closely, he can almost make out the other’s telling Changbin that he paid for his meal – telling Changbin that he’s over by the drink fountain.

Seungmin doesn’t enjoy being caught off guard. He’s always been one to have a plan – to know what he’s doing. Not knowing what comes next makes him panic.

He can see from the corner of his eye Jisung handing a cup over to Changbin and –

Seungmin busies himself  trying to find a lid for his cup. His thoughts are a mess and his heart is pounding as his soulmate comes closer. He’s trying to come up with a plan on what to say when they’re finally face to face.

Stories of soulmates meeting are common things to hear. There’s always something so romantic about the first meetings. Soulmates who have a line prepared to woo their counterpart ready or soulmates that kiss the moment they see each other. Good first impressions are a common thing. Call him a romantic but Seungmin always assumed he would have a similar experience to those kinds of stories.

Instead his first interaction goes like this:

Changbin approaches him rather cautiously, moving to fill his cup with ice before addressing him.

“So,” Changbin drawls as he presses the button for whatever drink he’s selected “I heard from my friends that you paid for my dinner?”

“Isn’t this your breakfast, technically?” Seungmin shoots back.

He only looks over at Changbin when he hears a small chuckle.

“You got me there,” Changbin’s voice bubbles with amusement, his smile widening when he catches him staring “Like what you see?”

Seungmin’s eyes trace over his sharp features, and yes, he does like what he sees. Changbin is handsome, but he knew that already. His pride, however, would never let Changbin tease him on their first meeting, so despite his best efforts to have a pleasant first meeting he ends up blurting out the first thing that comes to mind.

“You’re shorter than I expected.” He deadpans

Changbin sputters out a surprised laugh.

The statement surprises Seungmin just as much, he normally thinks before he speaks. He’s been told that he’s the only one between his friends that doesn’t just say whatever comes to mind. But today’s a special day.

Seungmin blinks, looking away in mild embarrassment. He sees Jisung studying the two of them, wide eyes surveying their interaction as he completely ignores Felix and Chan’s conversation.

“Jisung is watching us.” He comments.

“Yeah, well” Changbin chuckles, glancing over his shoulder for a second “That’s not surprising.”

They watch as Jisung notices them looking back at him, making his eyes wander suspiciously trying to play off as if he wasn’t just boring holes into the back of Changbin’s head. Seungmin rolls his eyes, already walking back towards the table, hearing Changbin scramble to follow him.

He never thought he was one to gay panic, always assumed that meeting Changbin would go smoothly and he’d be able to hold a conversation. He’s good at meeting new people, has a lot of good acquaintances. He had always assumed it would be no different with his soulmate. Reality sometimes is crueler than Seungmin would like. He doesn’t know what to say to the other.

Jisung shoots them a confused look at the both of them when they sit back at the table, silently asking what they’re doing, joining the table when they should be having a moment. Seungmin can feel their friend’s questions running through the other’s mind. He sends him a level glare – trying to convey the message of don’t ask. He sees Changbin shrug from the corner of his eye and – oh his soulmate seems so amused by this.

In that moment Seungmin changed his mind, Changbin wasn’t too kind to be his soulmate – Changbin was an asshole for enjoying his struggle this much.

There’s a beat of silence where Chan looks like he’s about to ask about their suspicious glances at each other and Jisung decides the best course of action is to slide off Felix’s lap and onto Seungmin’s.

“These vibes are awful right now.” Jisung exclaims loudly leaning heavily back against Seungmin’s chest “It’s all Changbin’s fault”

Changbin’s face falls into a look of absolute betrayal just as their order is called. Seungmin shoves his friend off his lap, walking away as everyone laughs at Changbin defending his vibe.  

By the time he comes back Jisung is in the middle of telling Chan about his apartment – gloating, like it's his own. “You should see it.” Jisung says

“You should just come with us when we go back” Felix invites flippantly “There’s always room at Seungmin’s.”

He kicks the leg of Felix’s chair lightly, balancing their sandwiches in his arms with a raised eyebrow “Are you inviting people into my home without asking me first?”

“Yup,” Felix winks at him “And you’re fine with it”

Seungmin scrunched his nose at the table in distaste “You’re not wrong.”  he mumbled

“Anyways,” Jisung hums turning to his own roommates “Then it’s decided that you guys are coming with us?”

Chan and Changbin looked at each other for a moment, the younger of the two shrugged in response, a little smile playing on his lips.

“Sure, if that’s fine?”” Chan answers for the both of them

Seungmin jerks his head towards the door “Let’s go then” he’s already walking away “hurry up or I’ll eat everything I’m carrying on my own.”

He hears his friends laugh behind him, and everyone moves to follow.

Halfway back to his apartment Changbin silently took one of the sandwich bags from his arms to help him stop struggling by himself while the others chatted happily. It was a small gesture, but Seungmin shot his soulmate a tight lipped smile in response nonetheless, appreciative for the help. But it’s weird. It’s weird because Seungmin can’t bring himself to join in on any conversation  – can’t start one up on his own either. It’s weird because despite his own nervous energy Changbin is doing just fine.

He’s lucky, he thinks, that his friends are such great distractions because he can’t fucking get himself to talk. Even as they make it back to his apartment, Seungmin’s barely said more than three sentences to anyone the entire walk back.

The front door to his apartment is open when they arrive , loud voices ringing out from his living room. Everyone gives each other a fast look of concern mumbling about how they were sure Seungmin locked his door behind him. Felix makes a nervous joke that maybe they’ve walked into a burglary.

Seungmin sighed, marching through the front door calling out a “Hwang Hyunjin if your feet are on my coffee table it's on sight!”

They all hear a small scuffle and then whine of “Feet are on the ground!” followed by Minho’s distinct laugh.

Seungmin’s relieved in a way to come back to some sort of normalcy. Seeing his best friend sprawled on the floor gives him some sort of grounding. Brings a small smile to his face.

“That’s more than just your feet Hyunjinnie.” Felix laughs

“We brought back more people,” Jisung tells them excitedly “Get up.”

“More?” Minho turns around from his spot on the couch looking over “Oh! Hey!” a grin spreads across his face as he recognizes the other two.

Hyunjin sits up, as Jisung introduces Chan to them despite Chan already knowing the elder of the two. Hyunjin smiles at Chan in greeting but his face quickly drops when he sees Changbin standing there in the same room as them.

“I just remembered!” Hyunjin blurts, turning to Seungmin and pointing “I need to talk to you!” He tries to sound nonchalant about it but Hyunjin’s never been good at hiding his emotions. And right now Hyunjin seems just as panicked at the fact that Seungmin’s soulmate is there with them as Seungmin feels.

Hyunjin’s on his feet in an instant, dragging Seungmin down the hall just out of earshot of the rest of the group.

“That’s Changbin.” Hyunjin states matter-of-factly

Seungmin nods his head once “Yep.”

“Changbin’s your soulmate.”

“He is.”

“And he’s in your apartment right now.”

“That’s right.”

Hyunjin stares at him for a long moment before asking “And how do you feel about that?”

“I’m panicking.” Seungmin answers simply, sounding a lot calmer than he feels

 Hyunjin chuckles, shaking his head at his friend. He opens his mouth to say something, but he’s cut off by Jisung dashing down the hall interrupting them.

“Hey, hey.” Jisung says, hooking his arm over Seungmin’s shoulder “I need to talk to Seungmin too.”

“No, I need to talk to him more.” Hyunjin argues

Jisung shakes his head “My talk is more pressing.”

“The fuck it is.” Hyunjin all but whines

They glare at each other neither willing to back down.

Hyunjin breaks  eye contact first with “Wait, do you know?”

“Do I know what?” Jisung frowns

“That,” Hyunjin gestures to Seungmin “And,” he jabs his thumb in the direction of the living room

A look of realization crosses Jisung’s face as he finishes with “Oh, yeah that they’re.” and bumps his own fists together, grinding his knuckles together. 

“Yeah!” Hyunjin nods “Exactly!”

Seungmin can only assume they’re talking about him and Changbin being soulmates.

“So, we’re here to talk about the same thing?” Jisung asks

Hyunjin shrugs “I guess so?”

Jisung turns to Seungmin then “So, what the fuck happened back there?”

Seungmin stiffens at being addressed so suddenly “I panicked!”

“Wait what happened exactly?” Hyunjin buts in

“He pussied out,” Jisung crosses his arms. “They said like three words to each other and then he ran away.”

Hyunjin shoots Seungmin a pointed look “What did you say?”

“I called him short,” Seungmin digs his nails into the palms of his hands. 

Jisung snorts, covering his mouth with his hand to muffle his laughter

“I told you I panicked!”

 “I love you Kim Seungmin.” Jinsung said between laughs.

“You’re so cute” Hyunjin joins in giggling

Seungmin can feel the heat rising in his cheeks “Shut up”

That only serves to make the two of them laugh harder at him. He slumps back against the wall, slowly sliding down into a squatting position. He doesn’t care that he’s being made fun of, but he is embarrassed at his own actions. Crossing his arms he lets out a huffy sigh. 

“It’s ok Seungminnie” Hyunjin comforts between giggles moving to pat his head.

Seungmin swats his hands away. He feels like a petulant child like this. He’s acting like a child – he just needs to man up and talk to Changbin.  It’s hard though, because there are people around and he doesn’t know how to breach the subject now that he’s lost his initial chance when they first met. It doesn’t help that everyone that knows thinks his apparent anguish is the funniest fucking thing.

To make matters worse Changbin joins them a few moments later, shuffling down the hallway with his hands shoved in his jeans pockets “What are you guys doing?”

Seungmin’s eyes shift to him and he finds himself with a lopsided grin on his face  “I’m being bullied.”

“What’re you doing?” Jisung cocks his head “This is a private conversation.”

“You guys are talking about me,” Changbin shrugs sitting down against the wall across from Seungmin “I figure I should be here”

“We’re not talking about you,” Hyunjin denies, “at least not really.”

The two of them also sit down, forming a small circle in the hallway.

“Seungmin’s right” Jisung nods his head “We’re mostly just making fun of him.”

“That aside” Seungmin frowns “My hallway is too small for this many people.”

“Who cares?” Hyunjin scoffs “We need a game plan.”

We?” Seungmin frowns

Changbin laughs at the words “Game plan” like it’s a joke, It takes him a moment to realize that the three younger men are completely serious which only makes him laugh harder “We don’t need a game plan. Everyone just needs to act naturally”

Seungmin sighs as Jisung and Hyunjin start talking over each other on how they all should go about acting naturally.

Seungmin shakes his head “Just act like you normally do, idiots”

Hyunjin throws his hands over is heart dramatically “Such harsh words!” he pouts “We’re just trying to help”

“We don’t need help” Changbin answers easily with a grin “We can figure this out on our own later.”

Jisung throws him a look of distaste grumbling “Since when were you so mature?”

“I’ve always been mature,” Changbin defends pointedly “You’re just too dumb to have noticed I guess.”

“Hey!” Jisung shouts, leaning forward to try swat at his friend, “You don’t act it around me.”

“To be fair” Seungmin nods “You don’t.”

“I feel so betrayed” Changbin sighs “But right now the four of us huddled outside of the bathroom is not very natural at all.”

“You’re right!” Hyunjin nods in agreeance “You two should go back to the living room.” he says, making a shooing motion

“Us?” Jisung furrowed his eyebrows, motioning between himself and Changbin “Why us?”

Hyunjin scrunched his nose “Because Seungmin is my best friend, I called talking to him first, and also you left your friend in there by himself.” he waves his hand at them again “So you two leave”

“First of all, Chan knows Minho so it’s fine that we left him,” Jisung defends “I’d be more worried for Felix.”

“For Felix?” Seungmin snorted “I’m more worried for Minho, he’s the only non-Aussie in there”

Hyunjin frowned “Chan’s Australian? Wait how do you know that?”

Seungmin motioned slowly to Changbin, not breaking eye contact with his best friend.

“Oh!” Hyunjin blinked “Right, duh.”

Jisung laughed “Ok yeah,” he shook his head as he started standing “At the very least we’ll leave you guys to at least catch Hyunjinnie up”

They watch the two of them retreat into the living room, Changbin pauses at the end of the hall, looking over his shoulder a little regretfully before Jisung pulls him away.  The following conversation carrying loud enough to hear.

Jisung asking “What’d we miss?”

“Chan adopted Felix.”

And a round of laughter as Chan boldly exclaims “He’s my younger brother!”

 Hyunjin ignored the noise, turning to address Seungmin again.

“So, you’re still panicking?” he asks gently.

Seungmin sighs, glancing between his friend and the living room “Yeah,” and then he pauses “If you’re about to ask me to talk about my feelings I’d rather not do that when anyone can hear me.”

Hyunjin nods, standing and motioning to the bathroom door “Wanna lock yourself in here with me and let it all out.”

“How romantic” Seungmin deadpans “It’s always been my dream to be locked in a bathroom with you Hwang Hyunjin”

“Fuck off” Hyunjin laughs “I’m trying to help you”

Seungmin rolls his eyes but beckons for the two of them to proceed.

Hyunjin sits the two of them on the cold tile floor of the bathroom facing each other. Seungmin almost leans against the porcelain of his bathtub but halts his actions – suddenly too reminded of when he got sick and embarrassingly revealed who his soulmate was to Hyunjin. And now his best friend is looking at him expectantly hoping for him to reveal more information in a similar fashion, minus the fever and upset stomach.

The thing is – Seungmin doesn’t know where to start. He feels stupid. Hyunjin just waits for him, giving him time to gather himself. But the longer the silence goes on the more jumbled Seungmin’s thought process becomes his tongue feels heavy and all he can bring himself to say is:

“I think I hate him.”

Hyunjin outright scoffs at him “You don’t hate him.” his voice light and teasing

“I think the fuck I do,” Seungmin whines “Me makes me…” he trials off, tensely opening and closing his fist “Makes me feel things.”

“Like what?”

Seungmin clicks his tongue in distaste “I don’t know.”

Hyunjin hums “That doesn’t mean you hate him” then almost as an after thought he opens his arms “You want a hug?”

Normally Seungmin would refuse, tends to steer away from physical contact more than any of his friends would like. However today when he sees Hyunjin’s genuine offer of comfort and feels the pit of anxiety stirring in the back of his throat he can’t bring himself to deny that a hug would be nice. So, he sighs, nods his head and scoots closer for his slightly taller friends to wrap his long limbs around him.

Now, not only does Seungmin feel stupid, he also thinks he looks stupid. Sitting on his bathroom floor with his friend hugging him as he feels himself get glassy eyed and emotional. Hyunjin doesn’t say anything for a long time, just lets Seungmin process his emotions and if he tightens his arms a little when Seungmin sniffles into his shoulder, then no one needs to know.

“You know,” Hyunjin mumbles, “You probably feel like really… horny, right now,”

What” Seungmin spits flatly like it’s not a question – and it’s not really, but it’s also not, not a question.

“You probably feel horny right now” Hyunjin repeats “I know that’s how I felt when-”

“Please stop talking,” Seungmin cringes “I don’t wanna hear this when you’re holding me.”

Hyunjin continues unperturbed “That’s probably why you don’t know how to process your current emotions.” He sounds so sure of himself “Because you’re super horny.”

Seungmin tries to push Hyunjin off himself at that, “I’m no more horny than I usually am.”

Unfortunately for the both of them Felix swung the bathroom door open just as Hyunjin posed the question of “Well, how horny are you usually?” as Seungmin continues to swat him away.

“What the fuck are you two doing?” Felix  laughs at them.

“Nothing,” Seungmin answers too quickly “We’ll be out in like five minutes.”

“If you’re not out by then, then I’m gonna piss in your kitchen sink.” Felix jokes, but closes the bathroom door as he leaves

“I don’t know how to breach the subject of the soulmate thing with him.” Seungmin relents “At least not with everyone around like this.”

“You guys can figure it out later” Hyunjin says “Like Changbin said it’ll all be fine as long as we act like normal”

“I don’t know if I can do that.”

“Want me to cling to you all night so you don’t have to think about it?” Hyunjin asks

Seungmin sighs for what feels like the millionth time that day “Yeah, I think that would be a good idea.”

Hyunjin is his best friend for a reason after all. Seungmin pats him on the back as they leave to join the others.

“Kim Seungmin!” Minho chucks a pillow at him from the couch, jokingly yelling “I heard you were cuddling up to my soulmate.”

Seungmin easily catches the pillow, a sly smirk finding its way onto his face “Who says he wasn’t the one cuddled up to me?” he glances around the room, noticing it's just Minho and Jisung, more voices coming from the direction of the kitchen.

Minho raises his eyebrows “Knowing Hyunjin?” he snorts “You make a fair point.”

Seungmin would have laughed at Hyunjin’s squawking of offense, but in that moment, he’s so distracted by Jisung freezing in his place, eyes wide and mouth slightly agape.

“Jisung you’re making a dumb face.” Seungmin calls amusement bubbling in his voice “What’s wrong?”

Jisung blinks slowly, like he’s processing “Hyunjin and Minho are soulmates?”

The other three all burst out laughing at that. Hyunjin dramatically falls to the floor gasping for air as Minho and Seungmin look at each other with flabbergasted looks of amusement.

“You’ve known us for half a year!” Minho slaps the younger man on the back, giggles still forcing themselves out “How do you not know?”

“Lix!” Seungmin finds himself calling, through his own laughter “Lee Felix!”

“What?” comes the response moments before Felix’s head pops out from the kitchen “What’s up?”

“Jisung-” Seungmin gasps between chuckles “Jisung didn’t fucking know that Jinnie and Minho are soulmates”

Any protests that Jisung was hurriedly trying to spew were immediately drowned out by another round of laughter with Felix’s own added to the mix. Chan supplying that he knew Jisung was unobservant, but he didn’t know he’s so much so that he didn’t realize two of his best friends were together doesn’t help calm anyone down.

Poor Hyunjin hasn’t been able to stand back up, he was laughing so hard.

It isn’t until Felix escapes to the restroom that they stop making fun of Jisung – who after a minute of pouting had also joined in on laughing at the sheer ridiculousness of the situation.

The rest of the night goes without a real hitch if Seungmin’s being honest. Hyunjin keeps his promise to stick by his side the whole night, Felix clings to him as well just because he saw an opportunity to. Everyone winds up staying the night, mostly by Jisung’s suggestion and Seungmin didn’t really mind. He does his best to ignore the looks Changbin sends him throughout the night, does his best to keep his own gaze at bay. 

All six of his guests leave at the same time the next morning – everyone having plans of some sort sorted for the rest of the day, or so he’s told. He waves the group off around noon and sets to cleaning his apartment of the small mess made the night before.

A half hour after everyone left, Seungmin is contemplating if vacuuming is going overboard on cleaning when his doorbell rings.

He blinks at the cup of coffee being offered to him when he opens the door.

“Hey. ” Changbin grins bashfully at him “Thought we should talk. Coffee?”

Seungmin takes the cup slowly, “Thanks” is all he says, and they stand there for what feels like far too long before he realizes that his soulmate is probably waiting to be let back into the apartment “Oh! Uhm.” He clears his throat and steps aside awkwardly.

Changbin said he was there to talk. Except he doesn’t start the conversation. They just sit there on Seungmin’s couch sipping away at their coffee in silence. Seungmin knows the elder is letting him gather his thoughts – because Changbin knows that he’s the kind of person that needs to lead in situations that involve him. This time however he almost wishes that Changbin would start first. The more time they spend just the two of them the more Seungmin finds himself distracted by sharp features and noticeable muscle and – oh no. Hyunjin might have been right.

Seungmin clears his throat, shaking his head a little before taking another gulp of his coffee.

“So,” Changbin drawls out, scratching just under his chin “What’re your thoughts?”

“Right now?” Seungmin finds himself asking stupidly

Changbin shrugs “Sure.”

Seungmin bites down on his bottom lip, digs his fingernails into his palm and contemplates what he wants to say. He doesn’t want to say something dumb – he’s felt stupid a lot more than he’d like to in the past twenty four hours. But then again, he thinks, Changbin’s not only is his soulmate – he’s also friends with Jisung, so even if he says something stupid, he probably wouldn’t judge him. So why not throw caution to the wind?

“Right now,” Seungmin breaths out “I think I want to kiss you.”

It’s not the answer that either of them were really expecting him to say. The surprise is visible on Changbin's face, and he’s sure on his own as well.

“Okay” Changbin says after a few beats.

Seungmin blinks “Okay?”

 Changbin’s lips quirk up into that amused smirk he’s had plastered on his face since yesterday “Okay.”

Seungmin’s suddenly determined to wipe that smug look off his face. He wastes no time, practically slamming his coffee cup on the end table and moving closer, closer , closer, until his right in the other’s personal space. Changbin looks mildly startled at his speed.

Seungmin pauses just close enough to be able to feel the other’s breath on his face. His gaze focused on his lips.

“Hi,” his voice is just above a whisper

Changbin licks his lips, mumbling “Hey,”

Seungmin closes the distance, slowly pressing their lips together. Changbin tilts his head accordingly, parting his lips against the gentle pressure. The kiss isn’t as rushed or as heated as Seungmin’s earlier actions would have suggested. Their lips sliding against each other slowly, getting familiar with the new sensation – getting familiar with his soulmate.

Seungmin’s never kissed anyone before. He’d always assumed it would be like fireworks and time would stop like all the crappy novels he read when he was 14 suggested. Kissing Changbin isn’t like that at all. It’s simple and a little awkward and all Seungmin can really think about is how the other tastes like coffee.

Changbin runs one of is hands through the short hair on the back of Seungmin’s head and –

It’s perfect. He thinks that this is exactly how a first kiss should be.

When they break apart, Seungmin instinctively presses his forehead against his soulmate’s collar bone. It’s a failed attempt to hide the blush he feels rushing to his face. Changbin chuckles a little, his hand still playing with the younger’s hair. It’s soothing, comforting. All of Seungmin’s anxiety is forgotten as they sit and take in each other’s presence.

“So, what’re you thinking now?” Changbin jokes

Seungmin hums, looping his arms around Changbin’s torso in a loose hug “I think it’s nice to finally meet you, soulmate”

He feels Changbin’s smile against the top of his head as he receives a small peck “It’s nice to meet you too Seungminnie.”