“Aren’t we too old for Truth or Dare?” Doyoung groaned from the couch.
“First of all, you’re never too old for Truth or Dare,” Johnny said sagely. “Second of all, this is our last year of college, it’s our final chance to act childish and get away with it.”
Doyoung sighed but then grabbed a notebook off the coffee table and started ripping out sheets of paper. “Okay, then everyone writes down some truths and some dares.”
Jaehyun laughed. Of course Doyoung would pivot from being unenthusiastic about the game to taking charge and organizing the whole thing.
“Doyoung, I know you’re studying education and about to embark on your life goal of teaching children for the rest of your life, but please stop practicing teacher techniques on us while we’re drunk,” Jungwoo piped up from where he was lying on his floor with his legs under the coffee table. Doyoung carefully stepped over him as he passed around the papers.
“He needs to be prepared, Woo,” Taeyong said. “What if all his students next year are drunk?”
Jaehyun snorted while Doyoung threw a pen in Taeyong’s direction. It was only the first weekend of senior year—classes hadn’t even started yet—but Jaehyun was already filled with a strange sense of missing nights like this. Or mornings, really, as it was nearly 3am already. They’d been out before this, wandering between different parties on campus as students got the remnants of their summer vacation energy out before classes kicked off on Monday. But these times were always Jaehyun’s favorites, sprawled across the furniture surrounded only by his closest friends, where he didn’t have to think about every word he said, and didn’t have to say anything at all if he didn’t feel like it. He’d only met them three years ago when they’d all ended up living on the same floor in the cramped freshman dorms, but it felt like he’d known them for much longer, and the thought of not having them all within a mile radius around campus made him wish even now that graduation would never come.
This year, Doyoung, Johnny, and Jungwoo had all gotten an apartment together off campus, and Johnny had adamantly decided for all of them that it would be their new headquarters—“‘Headquarters?’ Really?” Jungwoo had asked at that announcement. That was where they were now. It wasn’t super convenient for Taeyong and Jaehyun, who both still lived on campus, Taeyong in the freshman dorms where he was an RA, and Jaehyun in the senior housing near the athletic complex, but it was definitely more spacious and comfortable than both of their dorms. Jaehyun supposed it wasn’t the worst headquarters imaginable, even now with suitcases and boxes scattered around.
Doyoung dropped a sheet of paper and a pen into Jaehyun’s lap. “Okay, write your truths and dares and then fold them up and put them in here,” he announced. He pulled the baseball cap off his head and shook it in front of them. Taeyong wrinkled his nose exaggeratedly and Doyoung swatted at him playfully with the hat.
“If we put them all in one hat, how are we gonna know if it’ll be truth or dare that comes out?” Jaehyun asked, folding up his last paper.
“You get what you get,” chimed in Johnny. “I’m done! These are good,” he grinned as he dropped the folded papers into the hat.
“If you choose something you don’t want to do, then you have to take a shot,” suggested Jungwoo.
“Woo, we’ve already drank so much, are you trying to kill us all off before the year even begins?” Doyoung asked, staring at him disbelievingly. “Just, do the thing you choose, I don’t know. But don’t take shots. This apartment has never been puked in and I’d like it to stay that way at least for a while.”
The hat in Doyoung’s hand was now full of papers. Jungwoo sat up and they all moved a little closer to the table. Jaehyun was sitting on the floor, and he folded his arms and leaned on the table, feeling pleasantly drunk and content. His eyes strayed over to Taeyong, who was sitting cross-legged on the couch across from him, his hair hanging in his eyes. He looked very soft. Jaehyun wondered how he always managed to fold himself up so small when he wasn’t actually that much shorter than he was.
He was startled from his thoughts by Johnny announcing that he would go first and rummaging in the hat. “‘Truth,’” he read, squinting at the paper. “God, whose handwriting is this, it’s awful. Uh, ‘What’s the most awkward thing someone’s walked in on you doing?’” Johnny looked up and frowned thoughtfully.
Jaehyun’s eyes darted to Taeyong and then away immediately when he saw him looking back. He knew Taeyong was thinking the same thing he was, and his face burned at the memory of opening the door to Taeyong’s room the year before to drop off some books, and seeing him bent over his desk, naked, gasping while his boyfriend at the time fucked him. Honestly, Jaehyun wasn’t even sure who was fucking him, he just had to assume the boyfriend was the most likely candidate, but in the moment his eyesight had zeroed in on Taeyong so completely it was like he couldn’t see anything else. Taeyong had turned to look at the open door and just stared back at Jaehyun until the guy behind him yelled to get the fuck out. They had laughed it off later, but the image of Taeyong’s flushed face and huge dark pupils and the way his tight body curved over the desk had kept Jaehyun up for weeks. It wasn’t like he hadn’t imagined Taeyong in that position before, but actually seeing it almost broke the self control he’d carefully built up over years of reminding himself that Taeyong was just his best friend, and couldn’t be anything more.
“Well, my mom walked in on me jacking off in high school,” Johnny said. Jaehyun shook himself and tried to focus on Johnny instead of the images flickering behind his eyes.
“I think everyone’s mom has walked in on them doing that,” said Jungwoo.
“Not mine,” said Doyoung, shuddering. “It’s your turn, Woo.” Jungwoo grabbed a piece of paper.
“Ooh, dare. ‘Give us your phone and let us send one text to anybody in your contacts.’ Wait,” Jungwoo looked up, eyes narrowed. Johnny was already laughing and holding out his hand. “Wait, my phone’s dead, I swear!”
“You’re full of shit,” laughed Johnny, springing off the couch and wrestling Jungwoo to the floor, trying to pull his phone out of his pocket. Taeyong whooped loudly behind him and Doyoung banged on the table to egg him on while Jaehyun laughed. It was a welcome distraction.
Johnny finally emerged victorious and tossed the phone to Doyoung. “Text Lucas!”
“What? No! He’s off limits!” said Jungwoo, trying to launch across the table towards Doyoung, but coming up against the very solid wall of Johnny instead.
“Wait, his phone really is dead.” Doyoung stared at the phone as if it had betrayed him.
Jungwoo stopped struggling abruptly, looking surprised. “Really? Oh thank god.” He flopped backwards onto the floor with the back of his hand against his forehead.
There was a beat and then Taeyong burst out laughing, and when Taeyong laughed it was infectious, and soon they were all laughing. Jungwoo looked tremendously relieved as he scrambled up and snatched his phone back from Doyoung.
“You still owe us a dare though,” Jaehyun pointed out when they’d calmed down a little.
“I survived being tackled by Johnny and nearly died of fright seeing Doyoung about to text my crush, I think I’ve done enough,” Jungwoo said.
“Fair enough. And it’s your turn, Jae,” said Johnny. “Stop stalling.”
Jaehyun rolled his eyes and dug a paper out of the hat as everyone settled back down around him. “Dare.” Jaehyun’s eyes scanned the paper, and felt the smile that had been lingering on his face slip.
“What’s it say?” prompted Doyoung.
“Uh.” Jaehyun took a breath. “‘Kiss the person sitting two spots to your right on the mouth.’” Jungwoo started cackling. “Was this you?” Jaehyun hoped he still sounded lighthearted, and not like his insides were churning up towards his throat.
“Of course it was him, who else thrives on chaos like Jungwoo?” laughed Johnny. “Two spots to your right… so, Taeyong. Oooh.” Johnny started making kissing noises, earning a punch in the arm from Taeyong. But Taeyong was smiling, not looking genuinely bothered or even embarrassed.
Jaehyun knew he was good at pretending when it came to Taeyong, but he wasn’t sure he was good enough for this. He wished it could have been anyone else sitting there. Not that he wanted to kiss any of his other friends. But that was the problem, he did want to kiss Taeyong, badly. He had for a long time, but it wasn’t something he ever thought would happen, and the certainty that they’d never be more than friends was all that kept him sane. There was no point agonizing over something that was impossible. Jaehyun had learned long ago that sometimes the feelings he faked started to feel pretty real. If he acted fine about being Taeyong’s best friend and nothing more, then it was fine. Maybe if he acted like it wasn’t a big deal to kiss him in a game of Truth or Dare, it really wouldn’t be a big deal.
“Okay, let’s go,” said Jungwoo. “My dare has come to pass. It has to be a real kiss, too. Like, 10 seconds or something.”
“What? You can’t add rules on now,” said Jaehyun. But he was distracted by Taeyong sliding off the couch and leaning over the coffee table towards Jaehyun, planting both hands on the surface and staring down at him.
“Come on.” Taeyong had a half smile on his face that made Jaehyun’s heart beat a little faster. “Can’t disappoint our Jungwoo.”
Jaehyun reminded himself that this meant nothing, that Taeyong’s willingness to do the dare was just further proof how little it meant to him, and of course Taeyong wouldn’t be weird about it. He was always flirting with someone, always had multiple people at his heels, was used to being wanted, and getting what he wanted in return. Taeyong didn’t put a lot of stock in kisses. Jaehyun sat up a little straighter. He was dimly aware that their friends were making a great deal of noise, and he thought Doyoung might even be doing a drumroll on the edge of the table, but the sounds seemed to grow quieter as Taeyong leaned down towards him, and then their lips met and all the noise faded completely.
No, Jaehyun definitely wasn’t going to be able to fake his way out of this one. Taeyong’s lips were so warm, and softer than he’d ever imagined, in all the times he’d spent staring at them. He knew he was blushing, and hoped he’d already been flushed enough from the alcohol that it wouldn’t be obvious. Taeyong pressed closer to him and his lips parted slightly and Jaehyun knew he was done for. He stretched up towards Taeyong, and slipped his tongue over his lips, and then just inside. Taeyong’s hand was suddenly against his neck, and their tongues slid against each other and Jaehyun felt all the blood rush down between his legs. And then Taeyong pulled back, patting Jaehyun on the shoulder. He’d kneeled up on the coffee table at some point, and now he climbed off and curled back up on the couch, grinning over at Jungwoo. “Happy? Did you enjoy watching that?”
Jungwoo put two thumbs up and gave Taeyong an exaggerated wink.
“Hey, Jaehyun, hellooo?” Doyoung was waving his hand in front of his face. Jaehyun blinked and looked at Doyoung. “You good?”
“Yeah, of course, yeah.” Jaehyun forced out a laugh and was almost surprised how convincing it sounded even to his own ears.
“Man, you really have not hooked up with anyone in way too long. You look like you’ve never been kissed before,” said Johnny. “This year is gonna be the year, Jae, time to fuck around before you graduate.”
Jaehyun made himself laugh again and was relieved when the conversation finally turned to Doyoung. He was vaguely aware of Doyoung getting truth and confessing that he’d been the one who’d kept eating Jungwoo’s ice cream when they’d been roommates the year before. ( “That’s your biggest secret?” “I’m a very honest person, what can I say?”) But Jaehyun’s mind was still on the kiss. He could swear his lips were tingling from it even now. He kept stealing glances at Taeyong, but he didn’t really need to be sneaky about looking at him, because Taeyong was apparently totally absorbed in the game. He’d taken Johnny’s beer at some point and Jaehyun considered that Taeyong might be drunker than he’d thought he was. Maybe that explained everything.
The hat passed on to Taeyong, and when he pulled out a truth and read it aloud—“What’s the weirdest place you’ve ever had sex?”—Jaehyun knew he needed to get out of there, if only for a minute to clear his head. He stood up and shuffled to the bathroom as inconspicuously as possible. As soon as the door was closed he sagged back against it. He could still hear his friends out in the living room, but they were muffled. He raised his fingers slowly to his lips. His eyes closed. He couldn’t believe Taeyong had kissed him. Dare or no, it had happened, and it had been better than Jaehyun had ever let himself imagine. He’d managed to maintain a very careful balance for the past three years where he never let his thoughts get carried away when he and Taeyong were actually together—which was a lot of the time—but when he was alone it was a different story. Now he kept seeing Taeyong leaning towards him over the coffee table. He could still feel the wetness of his tongue for that split second it had pushed into his mouth. He could still taste him.
Jaehyun opened his eyes and dropped his fingers from his lips, letting his head thump against the door in a resigned sort of way as he pressed his hand frustratedly against the hardness in his pants. As if that would make it go away. He remembered the way Taeyong’s fingers had curved briefly around his neck, and wondered what it would feel like to have them around his cock instead. He let out an annoyed breath. What was he doing, in the bathroom getting hard over a kiss that hadn’t even been real? But at this point, there wasn’t much for it except to take care of it. He couldn’t exactly go back out to his friends in this state. He hoped they were all too drunk and sleepy to notice how long he was gone, and unzipped his jeans, wrapping his hand loosely around his hard cock and starting, almost reluctantly, to move.
As usually happened when he touched himself, the time he’d walked in on Taeyong came flooding back, except this time he was the one behind him, bending him over the desk, digging his fingers into his small waist. He moved his hand faster, sliding over the tip and letting the precome there make the glide of his hand smoother. He was trying to be as efficient as possible, even though he wouldn’t have minded letting the fantasy of being inside Taeyong play out longer, and soon he could feel his orgasm building deep in the pit of his stomach. “Fuck.” He dropped his head down away from the door, his eyes shut, his bottom lip between his teeth as he tried to keep his breathing quiet. He was going to come—
There was a knock on the door. Jaehyun could feel the vibrations through his back and he jumped away so suddenly he almost slammed himself against the sink. His heart was going to beat out of his chest, now from fright on top of his arousal. “Uh, just a sec?” He managed. His voice sounded unnaturally high.
“It’s me, open up.” Jaehyun stared at the door, processing Taeyong’s voice, which sounded a little sleepy. Jaehyun could almost see him pouting.
“I’m in the bathroom, just a sec?!” Jaehyun tried again, hoping desperately that Taeyong would leave.
But instead the doorknob started jiggling. “Open up…” Taeyong whined, and then he giggled. “Jaehyun, helloooooo?”
Jaehyun assessed the situation. He wouldn’t put it past Taeyong to pick the lock or break the door down, although he couldn’t fathom why he was so determined to get inside in the first place. And the shock of being interrupted had brought Jaehyun’s erection down slightly. He stared up at the ceiling for a moment, while the doorknob started rattling more loudly, and then he tucked himself back into his pants in a way that was extremely uncomfortable but somewhat presentable.
“Alright, what?” Jaehyun opened the door a crack, keeping most of his body behind it.
Taeyong pushed against the door surprisingly hard, opening it enough to step inside. Jaehyun backed all the way across the room, lamenting the fact that there wasn’t enough space for him to put much distance between them. He was debating whether covering his crotch with his hands would make it more or less obvious that he was still hard when Taeyong’s eyes flickered down his body. “I thought so,” he said, tilting his head slightly.
“You thought—what? Taeyong, what are you doing in here?” Jaehyun decided that putting his hands over his crotch was definitely the safer choice.
“Want some help?”
“No?” Jaehyun’s mind felt strangely blank. He was pretty sure this wasn’t actually happening. Or, if it was, Taeyong definitely wasn’t talking about what he thought he was talking about. “You’re not making sense. How much did you drink?”
“Not more than you. And I don’t know,” Taeyong shrugged and stepped towards Jaehyun, who took another step back. “I got to taste your mouth and it made me wonder what other parts of you taste like.”
Jaehyun went very still and just stared. This couldn’t be real. He must have passed out at some point and started dreaming. Taeyong took another step towards him and dropped to his knees. Jaehyun tried to step backwards again, and came up against the glass door of the shower, almost losing his balance. The towel rack dug painfully into his back but he barely noticed, especially as Taeyong’s fingers freed his cock from his boxers again. Taeyong glanced up at him briefly, as if to see if he’d be stopped, but Jaehyun could only stare down at him as his tongue slipped out between his lips and slid over the tip before he took him into his mouth. Jaehyun found the edge of the shower door behind him with his hand and gripped it tightly, not sure he’d stay standing otherwise.
Jaehyun was back on the brink of an orgasm almost right away, as Taeyong started bobbing his head, his hands braced on Jaehyun’s thighs. Taeyong was good at this, and the part of Jaehyun’s brain that still wanted to present him with logic said that shouldn’t be surprising, considering he always seemed to be dating or hooking up with someone. Jaehyun told that part of his brain to shut up.
“Shit, Yong, I-I’m gonna come,” Jaehyun hissed, trying to stay quiet.
“Mm.” Taeyong opened his eyes and looked up at Jaehyun, which almost ended him right there. His eyes were always huge, but at this angle they looked enormous. Jaehyun couldn’t look away. He watched him slide all the way down his shaft until he could feel his throat flutter around the head of his cock, and that was all it took. Jaehyun came, covering his mouth tightly with one hand. Taeyong swallowed around him and then slowly bobbed his head a few more times around Jaehyun’s gradually softening dick until he had to push his head away.
Taeyong smiled as he stood up, pressing the back of his hand against his lips. “Yeah, your cock tastes good too.” And then he turned around and left the bathroom.
Jaehyun let out a shaky breath and slid down against the shower door until he was sitting on the floor, staring at the closed door that Taeyong had just gone through, still unsure whether to believe any of that had really happened, wondering if his friends would find it weird if he simply never emerged from the bathroom again.
- - -
Somehow, Jaehyun did manage to leave the bathroom that night, and surprisingly, the week that followed was pretty normal. Classes started, and so did Jaehyun’s campus job at the athletic complex—hence him choosing to live in the dorms nearby. He’d worked there since freshman year, and it paid pretty well, and gave him a lot of time for him to get his schoolwork done while he sat at the front desk and checked people in and out of the facilities. He saw Johnny and Jungwoo a lot because they came by to work out during Jaehyun’s shifts when they could, and he and Doyoung were taking organic chemistry together—Jaehyun because he was majoring in Bio and looking towards med school, and Doyoung because his twisted genius brain thought it would be fun, even though he was majoring in Education. He and Taeyong met up for lunch a few times when their class schedules aligned, since they were the only two still living on campus and eating at the dining hall. Jaehyun had worried about seeing him again, especially alone, after what had happened, but it wasn’t weird at all. Taeyong even brought it up, a little teasingly, and Jaehyun laughed along, and then that had been it: their friendship continued on, unchanged.
Of course, all Jaehyun actually wanted was for their friendship to change. He wanted it all to have meant something to Taeyong, the way it had to him, even though he knew better than to put too much stock in anything that had happened. They were both drunk, after all. And Taeyong flirted with everybody, including Jaehyun, including their other friends. It never meant anything, he just enjoyed it. Jaehyun wouldn’t have thought a blowjob exactly counted as flirting, but what did he know.
The one thing that nagged at him, though, was why Taeyong had followed him to the bathroom in the first place. Not only had he followed him, he’d been expecting to find Jaehyun already aroused when he opened the door. How had he known that? Had he just been able to tell how affected Jaehyun was by the kiss? Was it because he assumed, probably rightly, that he had that effect on everybody? Or did he have some idea of Jaehyun’s feelings towards him? If that was the case, Jaehyun really had no idea what to make of Taeyong’s actions. He almost asked him about it multiple times throughout the week. Taeyong had talked about it casually enough, so it wasn’t like it was a taboo subject. But he couldn’t bring himself to mention it.
By the end of the week, Jaehyun had mostly accepted that that night had just been an anomaly—a perfect, extremely hot anomaly—in his and Taeyong’s very close but very platonic friendship. He’d endured a few years of ignoring the way his heart stuttered whenever Taeyong got too close, he could go back to ignoring that easily enough. He knew there wasn’t a single crack in his facial expressions or actions that would betray any of the aching longing that sometimes overcame him, and as always, focusing on how he came across on the outside helped him manage how he felt on the inside, even if the two didn’t align.
On Thursday night Jaehyun stayed late in lab with Doyoung, since organic chemistry was unsurprisingly already threatening to be the most miserable class of the semester (although Doyoung still seemed to be enjoying himself). He didn’t get back to his dorm until almost 2 am, and was at least relieved that he had late classes the next day as he finally dropped into bed. He was scrolling through his phone, feeling his eyes already starting to close, when a text popped up from Taeyong: You up?
Jaehyun blinked, feeling suddenly more awake but definitely confused. He texted back, yeah…? Only a moment later there was a knock on the door. He sat up and stared across the dark room for a moment before climbing out of bed and approaching the door. He peered out of the peephole and saw Taeyong, slightly distorted so his head looked too big for his body. Jaehyun opened the door. “Taeyong?”
“Hey, can I come in?”
Jaehyun stepped back, reaching to turn on the light, but Taeyong stopped his hand as he entered the room and slung his backpack off, dropping it to the floor. The door closed and the light from the hallway disappeared, and Jaehyun blinked to let his eyes adjust again to the dimness in his room. “Are you okay?” Jaehyun asked, worried suddenly that something horrible had happened that had led him to show up like this in the middle of the night. Taeyong did seem sort of subdued, but there was a restlessness underneath that Jaehyun recognized. Taeyong could switch quickly from being very quiet and calm, to being extremely bright and cheerful, even hyper, but sometimes he’d fall into this weird in between, like he had too much energy but wasn’t in a good enough mood to let it out the way he usually did.
“Yeah,” Taeyong looked at him, seeming like he was emerging from thinking about something complicated, and smiled. “I’m fine. Sorry it’s so late.”
“It’s okay….” Jaehyun still wasn’t sure why he was here. “Did you eat?”
Taeyong was quiet for a beat, and Jaehyun could see the shine of his eyes in the dark, still watching him. “Do you want to fuck?”
Jaehyun rocked backwards a step. “ What? ” That was the last thing he expected Taeyong to say.
Taeyong shrugged, glancing away. “I don’t know, last weekend was fun. And it’s been a long time since I’ve really been single. I mean I’m enjoying it, mostly, but I kinda miss the readily available sex, and I think I’d like to do it with you, if you want.” He looked back at Jaehyun, his eyebrows knitting together. “You don’t have to worry about me getting weird or anything. And I mean, this week was totally normal right? So I thought you’d be fine with something casual like this too. But seriously, no hard feelings if you’re not interested, or just don’t think it would be a good idea, or whatever.” He laughed a little.
Jaehyun just stared at him. “Not interested” was definitely not the problem he was having. He was pretty sure he’d felt his dick twitch just from hearing Taeyong say the word “fuck.” He was still in the process of trying to think of how to respond, with real words, when Taeyong smiled gently and said, “Oh, well, guess not then.”
Jaehyun coughed. “No, uh, I mean yes. Sure. We can, uh, do that.”
Taeyong laughed. “‘That.’ Cute.” He turned and started walking towards Jaehyun’s bed, reaching back and pulling his shirt off over his head as he went. Jaehyun felt his dick stir again. “Do you have condoms and stuff? I’d have brought some but I came straight from the library.”
“Oh, yeah, uh, in that drawer.” Jaehyun was still frozen in place by the door. The room was dim but not completely dark and he could see Taeyong rummaging around in the drawer he’d indicated, then dropping a bottle of lube and some condoms onto the bed. He watched him push his pants and boxers down over his hips and thighs until they dropped to the floor. And then Taeyong climbed into Jaehyun’s bed—his bed —and looked at Jaehyun, seeming to notice only now that he was still standing near the door. He raised his eyebrows.
Jaehyun made himself start walking towards the bed. Taeyong had started stroking himself, almost lazily, like he wasn’t really paying much attention to it. Jaehyun stopped near the foot of the bed, unsure what to do. Taeyong sucked on one finger and reached down between his legs, sliding it over his entrance and then slowly pressing it inside. His movements were matter-of-fact. Jaehyun tried not to think about that. At any rate, he was glad Taeyong was taking care of this part himself because he was pretty sure his own hands were shaking. He heard Taeyong’s breaths quicken and his own dick got a little harder at the sound, and at the sight in front of him. God , how could Taeyong look like this.
Taeyong had pulled his finger out for a moment, just to squeeze some lube over them and return to slipping two fingers inside himself, working them in and out and stroking his cock a little faster. “Are you just gonna stand over there and watch?” He asked breathlessly. “I mean, that’s cool if that’s your thing but I’m definitely gonna need something more from you at some point.”
Jaehyun nodded dumbly and pulled off his own shirt as he moved closer, kneeling on the bed near Taeyong’s open legs. He reached out a little tentatively and touched Taeyong’s knee. There didn’t seem to be much for him to do. He wanted to kiss Taeyong, but he wasn’t sure if he should, and he knew if he looked up at his face he wouldn’t be able to stop himself, so he kept his eyes on Taeyong’s hand, as he slid a third finger inside himself and let out a soft moan.
“Are you ready?” Taeyong asked, somehow sounding a little doubtful even with arousal clear in his voice. Jaehyun hesitated, then pushed off the rest of his clothes. “Oh, you really are,” Taeyong noted, glancing down where Jaehyun was already fully hard. He smirked a little, not unkindly. “Guess watching really is your thing.”
It’s not watching. It’s watching you, Jaehyun thought. But he just smiled at Taeyong’s teasing as he rolled on a condom and covered it with lube. Taeyong pulled his fingers out of himself but before Jaehyun could lean closer he rolled over onto his hands and knees. Jaehyun took a breath, trying to steady himself as he kneeled behind the other boy, but his heart was pounding erratically in his chest, and his hands hadn’t stopped trembling. His brain flashed dizzily through the countless fantasies he’d had of Taeyong before this, and he couldn’t quite believe this wasn’t one of them as he spread Taeyong apart, pressing his fingers into his skin to hide the shaking of his hands, and started to push inside him. Entering him was better than anything he could have imagined, and he was pretty sure it was better than anyone else he’d ever been with. Of course, every time he’d imagined being with Taeyong he’d kissed him, a lot, and touched him, and knew exactly what the sex meant and what Taeyong’s feelings were. He ached to lean over him now, wrap his arms around him, cover his back and neck and face with kisses and bites, but he stayed upright and started thrusting into Taeyong as he felt him relax slightly around his length. A quiet voice in the back of his mind was telling him this wasn’t how it was supposed to be, but he knew, without any doubt, that he would take anything Taeyong would give him. Even if this was all he could ever have, he would never be strong enough to say no.
“Harder,” grunted Taeyong in front of him. Jaehyun started fucking into him harder, digging his fingers into his sides. There was an edge of frustration to it, from everything else he wanted to do, everything else he wanted this to mean, but Taeyong still felt so good around him and the pleasure only grew. He pressed one hand down on Taeyong’s back until he dropped down to his forearms and arched his back more, and the sight of it was almost too much to take. His shoulders were broad and the muscles flexed across his back as Jaehyun slammed into him, but his waist was slender, his hips narrow. His skin was flushed and Jaehyun could see that his fingers left marks against it that faded slowly, even though he hadn’t been squeezing that hard.
Taeyong moaned loudly suddenly and his fingers clenched in the sheets, his head dropping down between his shoulders. “Fuck, right there, yes,” he gasped, and Jaehyun groaned too at the sound of his wrecked voice. He let himself pretend this was something else, that Taeyong hadn’t just shown up at his door out of boredom and sexual frustration, and Jaehyun had always been good at pretending. He started to lose himself, in Taeyong’s body, in the moans that slipped from his lips, in his own desperation.
He groaned again and Taeyong turned his head towards the sound. There was sweat at his temples and Jaehyun didn’t think he’d ever seen anything so beautiful. “Are you close?” Jaehyun gasped. He could feel his thrusts getting erratic and wasn’t sure how much longer he’d last.
“Yeah,” Taeyong managed. He let his chest hit the mattress and his voice came out muffled, half his face pressed into the sheets. “Yeah, just keep… going like that. Fuck.” He reached down and started to touch himself, and Jaehyun thought he’d never wanted to see something as badly as he wanted to see Taeyong come, fully see him. But he just stared at his back and tried as hard as he could to hold back his own orgasm even as he kept thrusting into his tight heat again and again. He could feel his thighs quiver with the effort of it, and his lower lip stung sharply as he dug his teeth into it.
Finally Taeyong cursed and twisted his face fully into the mattress as he moaned loudly. Jaehyun could feel his walls clenching tightly around his cock, and that was enough to send him over the edge that he’d been teetering at for what felt like an eternity already. His orgasm was intense, and he wasn’t sure if the moans he could hear were coming from Taeyong or from himself. His hands slipped off Taeyong’s sides and landed on the mattress, and he bowed over Taeyong’s back, his muscles shuddering and his breath coming in uneven gasps.
He came back to himself slowly. His arms and legs were shaking. He slipped out of Taeyong carefully, another tremor going through him at the sensation as he did, and flopped onto his back. He was still out of breath, and when he finally brought himself to turn his head and look at the boy sprawled on his stomach beside him, he could see that his back was still rising and falling heavily with his breath as well. Taeyong’s eyes were closed, and Jaehyun allowed himself a moment to stare, at his sweaty skin, at the marks still faintly visible on his hips and the flushed skin across his ass where Jaehyun’s hips had met his flesh again and again.
When he looked back up at Taeyong’s face, his eyes were open, and he smiled sleepily. Jaehyun’s chest ached. He wanted to roll over, and gather Taeyong into his arms, and breathe him in, and stay like that for the rest of the night or maybe the rest of his life. But he just smiled back and then looked carefully back up at the ceiling.
Taeyong pushed himself up and crawled over Jaehyun to get out of bed, looking around for his clothes. Jaehyun managed to throw out the condom but that was all the energy he had, so he just lay back and watched him. “There’s a towel over there you can use,” he said. Taeyong found it, and cleaned himself up a bit, and Jaehyun watched as his skin slowly disappeared beneath his clothing, and then he was dressed and there was nothing to indicate that anything had even happened other than his slightly sweaty hair and the fact that Jaehyun was still lying naked a few feet away.
Taeyong picked up his backpack and slung it over his shoulder, looking back towards Jaehyun on the bed. “Well, that was fun, right?”
“Yeah,” Jaehyun said, trying very hard not to entertain the nagging feeling that he could have been anyone with a cock and Taeyong would still have enjoyed it just as much. He smiled, and hated himself for how easy it was for him to do even as the ache in his heart threatened to split his chest open. “Let me know if you wanna do it again sometime.” His voice sounded light, careless, maybe a little drowsy. He sounded satisfied.
“I definitely will.” Taeyong winked, opened the door, and was gone.
Jaehyun sighed and stared back at the ceiling. He was pretty sure he’d played things just right to allow something like this to happen with Taeyong again. And he’d probably be able to keep having him like this, for a while at least. He smiled at the ceiling, and this time when he sighed he made it sound sated and content.
He had always been good at pretending.
- - -
Jaehyun was correct that he’d played things off casually enough that Taeyong did indeed come back to him again for sex. And again, and again. They only ever did anything in Jaehyun’s room, because as an RA Taeyong was living in a building full of freshman who, on nights he was on duty, might knock on his door at any moment for any number of reasons, from a lost key to puking all over the bathroom. After a few weeks, Jaehyun realized that Taeyong was coming over almost every night he wasn’t on duty. They’d fuck, sometimes more than once, and it was good—Jaehyun couldn’t deny that it was good even if the circumstances weren’t what he’d envisioned. So he kept pretending, to keep everything going a little longer. Every time he pressed into Taeyong’s body he let himself believe it meant something, and every time Taeyong smiled and left he smiled back and ignored the way his heart broke.
Other than those nights, nothing much else changed. They hung out together, and with their other friends, studied together, ate meals together, went out drinking together to parties or to Johnny, Doyoung, and Jungwoo’s apartment. None of their friends knew, and neither planned to tell them anytime soon. And Jaehyun found that he didn’t have to pretend too hard to be fine when they spent time together. They’d always been so close that Jaehyun didn’t have to fake that he was enjoying their time together now. Of course sometimes when Taeyong sat next to him or walked past him or just looked particularly good, which was admittedly all the time, he was overwhelmed by the desire to kiss him, but that wasn’t actually anything new, so it wasn’t so hard to get past.
And as the weeks went by, and Taeyong kept showing up regularly, Jaehyun started taking a little more each time they were together: a longer kiss, a lingering touch. He tried not to go too far, worried he wouldn’t be able to reign himself back if he did, but it was getting harder to hold back. One night when Taeyong opened the door he pulled him in and kissed him before Taeyong could start talking, or start undressing as routinely as he usually did. Jaehyun didn’t stop kissing him as he lifted him and carried him to his bed, and once he got his clothes off he went down on him, sucked him off and ate him out until he was writhing in the sheets above him. Taeyong still rolled over like he usually did when they actually had sex—Jaehyun really wasn’t sure if Taeyong just liked it more from the back or if he didn’t want to be face to face, and he tried not to think about it too hard—but Jaehyun pulled him up until he was holding him flush against his chest and kissed over his neck and shoulders as he thrust into him.
Later, once they finished and were catching their breath next to each other, a time Jaehyun always wished would last longer than it did, Taeyong rolled onto his side and propped his head on his elbow to look down at Jaehyun. “You know you don’t have to do all that right?”
Jaehyun resisted the urge to reach up and brush the sweaty hair off Taeyong’s forehead. “What?”
“Like, eat me out and everything.”
“You didn’t like it?”
Taeyong pouted, a smile twitching at the edges of his mouth. “I didn’t say that.”
Jaehyun laughed. “So what are you saying then? You’ve sucked my dick before, I’m pretty sure that’s how this all started in fact. What’s the difference?”
“I don’t know. I just mean, you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to for my sake.”
Jaehyun looked at him closely for a moment. “Well, I wanted to do that.”
Taeyong nodded and they fell into silence for another moment, until Taeyong got up and started gathering his things to leave. Jaehyun couldn’t help but feel he still hadn’t quite understood what Taeyong was trying to say, or why he was trying to say it. But the next day when they met up to get coffee on the way to class nothing felt off, and things carried on as they had been going.
Every once in a while though, Jaehyun would catch Taeyong’s eyes on him, and he couldn’t help but wonder if maybe he wasn’t the only one who was good at pretending.
- - -
“I can’t believe Taeyong isn’t here yet,” Doyoung groaned from the couch. Jaehyun was at their apartment before they headed to a party at a house down the street that a few seniors on the swim team lived at. Jaehyun knew them from working at the athletic center, but he was pretty sure the party wasn’t exactly going to be exclusive about invites.
“Can’t you believe it though?” Johnny asked without looking up from the drinks he was pouring for them. They’d each already finished one. “He’s literally always late when we go out.”
Doyoung sighed and took the drink Johnny handed him. “Yeah, you’d think I’d learn. Jaehyun, text him to hurry up.”
“Why me? Haven’t you already been texting him?” Jaehyun took his own drink and took a sip, grimacing as the terribly mixed concoction burned his throat. Johnny grinned at him like this was exactly the reaction he was hoping for.
“Of course I’ve been texting him, I’ve probably texted him like 10 times and he’s ignored them all, as usual. But he never ignores you.”
“That’s not true. I just don’t ever bother texting him to hurry up.” Jaehyun laughed.
“Text him. I guarantee he replies to you,” said Doyoung.
Jaehyun rolled his eyes but fished his phone out of his pocket and texted Taeyong, are you coming? we’re all ready to go.
“How long do you think it’ll be?” Jungwoo asked, coming into the living room and dropping onto the couch next to Doyoung. “Should I time it?”
Jaehyun’s phone chimed. Jaehyun looked at it, and the other three boys looked at Jaehyun.
“It’s him, isn’t it,” Doyoung said when Jaehyun stayed silent.
Jaehyun scratched the back of his neck, feeling his ears heat up. “He says he’ll be here in 20.”
Jungwoo laughed delightedly and slapped Doyoung’s arm, who rolled his eyes exaggeratedly. “I can’t believe he really replied to you immediately, ” sighed Doyoung.
Jaehyun couldn’t help but smile. “I told you, it’s just that I don’t usually hassle him.”
“Are you calling my friendship a hassle?” Doyoung said grumpily.
Jaehyun laughed out loud this time. “Oh, poor Doyoungie,” he cooed, while Jungwoo ruffled Doyoung’s hair. Doyoung shoved him away indignantly but was laughing too.
They were halfway through their third disgusting drink courtesy of Johnny by the time Taeyong showed up. The four of them made as big a deal as possible about how long they’d been waiting, shoved two drinks into Taeyong’s hands—Jaehyun saw him sneakily pour one into Johnny’s cup instead of drinking it—and then, finally, they were heading out the door.
The house was already packed when they arrived. Soon they all had more drinks in their hands, slightly more palatable than Johnny’s but not by much. Doyoung made a face and said, “Taeyong, I hope you know it’ll be your fault if we all get wasted.”
Taeyong sputtered. “How could it possibly be my fault!?”
Jaehyun looked up as a hand slapped firmly against his back and came face to face with the captain of the swim team. “Oh, hey Yuta. Thanks for inviting us, this is cool. You guys really have this whole house to yourselves?”
“I mean, there are five of us, it honestly gets cramped,” laughed Yuta. “Hi Taeyong, how’s it going?”
Taeyong tilted his head to the side and smiled. Jaehyun eyed him. “Fine. I miss Drawing 1 though.”
“Aw, seriously, that class was the best. I don’t know why they didn’t just let you be the model every day though.”
“Oh please,” Taeyong said and sipped his drink. Jaehyun didn’t miss how his smile grew and his eyes didn’t leave Yuta’s face. His heart squeezed a little in his chest and he took a large, burning swallow of his own drink. “Then I’d never have gotten to draw you.”
Jaehyun looked around, wishing one of their other friends would intervene, but they weren’t standing beside them anymore. He spotted Jungwoo across the room talking to Lucas, and Doyoung and Johnny were have a lively conversation with some kids Jaehyun thought he recognized as juniors. He was torn between escaping whatever this conversation was turning into and feeling a little queasy at the thought of leaving Taeyong alone with Yuta.
He was vaguely aware that Taeyong and Yuta’s conversation was still going on and he turned back towards them in time to hear Taeyong say, “…if you’re free sometime.” Jaehyun had no idea what Taeyong had just suggested doing if Yuta was free, and he knew he had no right to care about whatever it was, but his gut twisted anyway as Yuta smiled back.
They kept chattering on next to him, and he kept drinking and trying to drown them out even as some more twisted part of him couldn’t help but zero in on every lilting inflection in Taeyong’s voice. Did he sound like that when he talked to Jaehyun? He tipped his head back to take another sip and realized his cup was empty. He glared at the cup for a moment, until movement in the corner of his eye caught his attention. It was Taeyong’s hand, pushing against Yuta’s arm while he laughed. Jaehyun directed his glaring at Taeyong’s hand instead. “I need a new drink. Let’s get more.” He looked significantly at Taeyong as he turned to walk away.
“I don’t need another drink though,” Taeyong said, getting his laughter under control and gesturing at his mostly-full cup.
Jaehyun hesitated, glancing at Yuta who was looking at him mildly. Both Yuta and Taeyong seemed oblivious to Jaehyun’s tension. And why wouldn’t they be? Jaehyun was good at hiding his emotions, after all. It seemed like that stayed true even when he wasn’t sure he actually wanted to hide them. “Oh, okay….” Jaehyun turned and started walking towards the kitchen. He heard Taeyong laugh behind him and stopped. His skin felt too hot. He could tell the drink he’d just downed too quickly was hitting his system but he didn’t think that explained it. Even though he’d known what he was getting into when he and Taeyong started sleeping together, he couldn’t quite believe Taeyong was flirting with someone right in front of him like that. Maybe it wasn’t serious, maybe he wasn’t interested in Yuta at all and this was just him being tipsy and having a good time. But then again, maybe he was interested.
Jaehyun still hadn’t moved, and then Taeyong laughed again and his heart kicked in his chest, propelling him to turn around. He walked back over to them, grabbing Taeyong’s arm. “Actually, I need to talk to you.”
“What? Now?” Taeyong looked genuinely surprised as Jaehyun kept walking towards the door, pulling Taeyong with him. “Uh, see you later Yuta!” Taeyong called, hurrying to keep up. “Jaehyun? Are you okay?”
Jaehyun wasn’t sure if Taeyong could really be this clueless, but at least he was following him without argument. They burst outside. “Jae?” Taeyong asked, sounding a little breathless as he walked quickly beside him. “We just got there, what happened?”
Jaehyun whipped around in the middle of the sidewalk and barely processed Taeyong’s big, surprised eyes before he crushed their lips together in a forceful kiss. Taeyong made a muffled sound against his mouth. Jaehyun tightened his hand that was still wrapped around Taeyong’s bicep and backed him up against a car parked at the curb. Taeyong made a sound that seemed a little different than before. Jaehyun threaded his fingers into Taeyong’s hair and pulled his head back, moving his mouth to his neck, sucking on the skin until he heard Taeyong’s breath go quick and shaky.
“Jae, what… there are people.”
“There aren’t people,” Jaehyun said lowly into his neck. He had no idea if there were people or not. He slid his fingers under Taeyong’s shirt and clutched at his hips. He was already getting hard and knew Taeyong could feel it where they were pressed together.
Taeyong let out a breathy laugh. “What’s gotten into you?” His fingers twisted into Jaehyun’s shirt, pulling him closer as Jaehyun mouthed at his collarbone. He laughed again, still sounding a little surprised. “Are you jealous?”
“What if I am.”
“I mean, we’re not—“
Jaehyun pulled back so suddenly that Taeyong’s eyes widened and his smile slipped into something more uncertain. “I know, Yong, I know. You can do whatever you want. But that doesn’t mean I wanna watch . ” He leaned in and kissed him again, pressing against him harder than before, rolling his hips until Taeyong whimpered quietly into his mouth. Shouts and laughter slowly registered and Jaehyun finally pulled away, breathing hard. He could hear a crowd of people coming towards them on the sidewalk but he couldn’t look away from Taeyong, who was staring back at him just as intensely, no trace of amusement left on his face.
Jaehyun took him by the wrist and started walking fast, pulling Taeyong with him again. He was so hard it hurt and he was glad it was probably too dark for anyone they passed on the street to tell. They reached the edge of campus and the short walk had done nothing to ease the ache between Jaehyun’s legs. His dorm was still so far away, and Taeyong’s dorm was even farther. He felt dizzy with need. “Come on.” He turned abruptly and pulled Taeyong up a large set of stairs and through the grand library doors.
“What are we doing here?” Hissed Taeyong as they passed the front desk. They could see the main reading room was mostly empty—it was a Saturday night after all. Jaehyun kept walking until they got to the elevators.
It took all of Jaehyun’s fraying self control to keep his hands off Taeyong when they got into the elevator, but he just stood still and watched as the light above the doors counted up. He could feel Taeyong glancing at him but he didn’t move either. The doors dinged and opened and Jaehyun pulled Taeyong after him onto the floor. “The stacks? Seriously?” Taeyong whispered. “Jaehyun….” But even though his whisper sounded a little frantic he followed Jaehyun without complaint, and didn’t pull his wrist out of his grasp.
They passed row after empty row of books. Through the metal grate of the floor they could see more levels of books below them. Jaehyun always liked studying in the stacks, enjoyed the isolation, the sense that he could stay in that maze of books forever and never be found. But he wasn’t thinking about studying now.
Jaehyun finally turned down a row. “Jae—” Taeyong hissed, his voice cutting off when he collided with Jaehyun, who’d stopped walking in the middle of the row. “Wha—?”
Jaehyun turned around, ignoring the weird shiver of nerves that ran down his spine as he pulled Taeyong against him and kissed him again. He turned until Taeyong’s back was against the shelf and slid his hands up his shirt. He felt Taeyong’s chest shake as he let out a quiet laugh. “Holy shit, if I’d known this is how you get when you’re jealous…. But, here? Are you sure?”
Jaehyun didn’t trust his voice so he just kissed him again, sliding his thumbs over his nipples and feeling them harden under his fingers. He pulled back and turned Taeyong around, pushing his chest against the bookshelf this time. “Jae? Oh, fuck.” Jaehyun’s knees hit the floor as he hooked his fingers under the waistband of Taeyong’s pants and boxers and pulled them both down. Jaehyun spread him apart and licked across his entrance, pressing with his tongue until it slid inside. He reached between Taeyong’s legs and stroked him. Taeyong hissed above him. “Jae….” He reached back and slid his hand into Jaehyun’s hair, pressing him closer. Jaheyun hadn’t thought he could get harder than he already was but apparently he’d been wrong. He dug the heel of his hand against himself and almost groaned. He could barely breathe. He wasn’t sure Taeyong was fully prepped yet but he was wet with spit now at least and Jaehyun didn’t think he could wait much longer.
He pulled away, catching his breath, and stood up, undoing his pants and freeing his cock. “Taeyong….” He pressed against him, mouthing over the back of his neck. “Can I?”
“Yeah,” Taeyong breathed into his arm, which was braced against the shelf in front of him. “But pull out before you come.”
Jaehyun pulled back enough to get a fair amount of spit in his hand and stroked it over his dick before pressing against Taeyong’s entrance. He could barely enter halfway. “You okay?” Taeyong nodded and pressed back into Jaehyun, who moaned quietly. “Fuck, you’re so tight. Relax.” Taeyong let out a breath and Jaehyun began thrusting into him slowly while he adjusted, then faster as he lost the remnants of his self control. He pushed Taeyong’s shirt up his back and snapped his hips towards him harder. Taeyong moaned and Jaehyun jumped at the suddenly loud sound on the silent floor. He reached up and clapped his hand over Taeyong’s mouth and felt his wet lips and tongue against his palm.
He thrust into him again and then couldn’t stop, even when the sound of his hips slapping into the skin of Taeyong’s ass got loud enough to make his stomach twist with nerves. If there was someone studying on this floor, or maybe even on the floor below, they’d definitely hear them. And there wasn’t much mistaking what the sounds were. But Jaehyun just hoped no one was there on a Saturday night because he definitely couldn’t hold back now.
He could feel Taeyong trying to gasp for breath against his hand, his teeth digging into his finger as he made strained sounds in the back of his throat. One of his hands was wrapped so tightly around Jaehyun’s wrist it hurt, and the other one gripped the shelf. His knuckles were white. Suddenly he slipped a little and Jaehyun realized his knees had buckled. Jaehyun caught him around his stomach and held him tightly.
Taeyong wrenched his face away from Jaehyun’s other hand. “Jae, Jae, I’m gonna come,” he gasped. It clearly took effort to keep his voice quiet. Jaehyun fucked into him harder. “No, Jae, fuck, stop, I can’t come on the books. Jae!” Jaehyun pulled out, stumbling a little and almost letting out a sob at the sudden lack of sensation. But he turned Taeyong around and sank to his knees again. He swallowed him down all at once, and Taeyong came right away, gasping and shaking above him.
Jaehyun swallowed and stood up, claiming Taeyong’s lips in a hard kiss for a moment before pushing him down. He threaded his fingers into his hair. Taeyong hesitated, still out of breath himself, and then took his cock into his mouth. The return of sensation was so sudden and intense that Jaehyun clutched the bookshelf himself, bowing forward above Taeyong’s kneeling form. His hips rolled forward a couple times before he could stop himself and Taeyong gagged but didn’t pull back. Jaehyun felt all the heat in his body rush between his legs and he came so hard it left his fingers cold and tingling.
When Taeyong pulled off Jaehyun sank down to his knees too, and they sat like that for a moment. As their breaths slowed the library returned to silence and Jaehyun’s nerves came back, but he couldn’t hear any approaching footsteps, or any noise around them at all.
He looked at Taeyong. His cheeks were pink and his eyes were a little wet. “Are you okay?” he whispered.
Taeyong laughed a little. “I can’t believe we just fucked in the library.” He looked around and then back at Jaehyun, his smile a little bigger. “Jung Jaehyun, I never would’ve thought.”
Jaehyun found himself smiling too, and he leaned forward and kissed Taeyong before he could think about it. He could feel Taeyong’s smile soften against his lips as he let himself be kissed. The silence settled fully around them, and Jaehyun raised a hand to slide gently over Taeyong’s cheek, and let himself kiss him the way he always wanted to. There was a moment, during that kiss in a place so quiet they could hear each other’s heartbeats, when he knew without a doubt that this was what it felt like to be in love.
After a few moments they both pulled away. Taeyong smiled again, or maybe he hadn’t stopped smiling, and Jaehyun brushed his hair off his forehead before standing up stiffly and pulling Taeyong up beside him. They fixed their clothes a little self-consciously and made their way back through the endless shelves to the elevator.
When they got outside the noises of a Saturday night on campus rushed back, as students passed them in groups at varying levels of intoxication. Jaehyun’s dorm was on the way to Taeyong’s, so they walked together like they had countless times, but this time when they arrived in front of the building Jaehyun couldn’t say goodbye. He wasn’t sure if he was still drunk or if the silent library had enveloped him in some sort of spell, but he turned to Taeyong and asked, “Do you wanna just sleep here?” Taeyong looked at him warily. “Just sleep, I swear.”
“That’s why I’m sideeyeing you: we don’t “just sleep” together.” He chuckled but it sounded a little uneasy and his eyes shifted around.
Jaehyun’s heart ached as he thought of all the times he would have loved to just sleep beside Taeyong, if only he would have stayed with him. “Come on, your dorm is far away. I won’t keep you up.”
“…Okay,” Taeyong finally nodded.
Jaehyun turned around quickly so Taeyong wouldn’t see how wide his smile was and they entered the building. When they got to his room, Taeyong asked, “Can I get a change of clothes? I’m kind of a mess.”
Jaehyun nodded and rummaged in his drawers until he found some shorts and a t-shirt. They’d been together in this room countless times, but it felt different. He tried to tell himself that was just in his head, that it probably didn’t feel any different for Taeyong, but he could remember the way Taeyong had been in the library, the way he’d smiled and softened against him as they kissed, and he wasn’t so sure. He tried not to stare as Taeyong stripped off all his clothes and pulled Jaehyun’s clothes on instead. He’d seen him naked so many times, but every time the sight of his lithe body and smooth skin made Jaehyun’s heart beat a little faster.
By the time Jaehyun had changed clothes himself Taeyong was already in his bed. Jaehyun hesitated, wondering how he was ever going to be able to fall asleep next to him. He was so fucked. But he lay down and shifted around a little to get comfortable, lying on his back. He only lasted a few seconds before he turned his head and looked at Taeyong. He was lying on his side looking back. He looked startled to suddenly find Jaehyun looking at him.
Jaehyun smiled and rolled onto his side so he was facing Taeyong too. “You’re comfortable enough, right?”
Taeyong still looked a little surprised but he didn’t move away. “Yeah, I’m comfortable. Night.” He closed his eyes. Jaehyun kept watching him. They weren’t touching, but he could feel Taeyong’s breath whisper over his skin, and he let himself pretend for a while that he wasn’t the only one in love.
Taeyong cleared his throat and said, without opening his eyes, “Are you watching me?”
Jaehyun startled. “What? No.”
Taeyong’s lips twitched. “Go to sleep, Jae.”
“I am.” Jaehyun still didn’t close his eyes. “Goodnight, Taeyong,” he whispered.
- - -
Jaehyun woke up early the next morning to the sound of his door opening, and it was as though even in his sleep he’d known Taeyong might try to sneak away, because he came fully awake very suddenly and sat up. “Taeyong?”
He saw Taeyong jump a little with his hand still on the door, and when he turned around Jaehyun could see the tension in his body even from across the room. “Oh, sorry, I didn’t want to wake you up.”
“You could’ve woken me up,” Jaehyun said, his heart beating quickly from how fast he’d wrenched himself out of sleep. It made him feel a little disoriented, almost panicked. He desperately didn’t want Taeyong to leave, not like this. He never wanted Taeyong to leave, of course, but this felt worse.
Taeyong was still hesitating awkwardly by the door. Jaehyun tried to make himself open his mouth and tell Taeyong not to go, but he couldn’t. He wondered, not for the first time, if he’d gotten too good at tricking himself out of expressing his feelings, at tricking everyone around him that he wasn’t feeling much at all.
“I’ll see you later, Jaehyun,” Taeyong finally said. The statement was so banal, so anticlimactic, and Jaehyun felt the panicked energy drain away all at once, leaving him feeling tired and sad.
He smiled. “Yeah, cool, see you later.” The door closed behind Taeyong with a click and Jaehyun dropped back into his pillows, covering his face with his arms. He’d slipped. Last night, he’d slipped and let himself believe that things had changed. That Taeyong’s feelings had changed. Usually he had a chance to carefully remind himself that all there was between them was friendship and, somehow separately from that, sex. But last night when Taeyong had agreed to stay over, Jaehyun had let himself stay in his fantasy world for too long. He’d let himself fall asleep and dreamed that when they woke up everything would be different, closer to what he truly wanted. He was usually so careful. It was a stupid mistake to make.
That evening when one of the other students who worked with Jaehyun at the athletic center sent an email asking if people could cover her evening shifts that week because she had to work on a group project, Jaehyun replied saying he’d cover all of them. He didn’t even take her up on her offer to take some of his normal shifts in exchange. The new shifts kept him working until the building closed at midnight. As the week started, Jaehyun quickly realized this did wonders for his productivity, because he was literally trapped for hours behind a desk with minimal interruptions from his work.
Most importantly, the athletic center was not a place Taeyong went very often. A strange sort of relief flooded through Jaehyun when Taeyong texted him on Tuesday night asking to come over, and he could truthfully tell him he’d taken extra shifts and was working every night that week, so no, he couldn’t.
It wasn’t that Jaehyun didn’t want to see him, quite the opposite—it was always quite the opposite. But he knew he’d strayed too far the last time they’d been together. He needed to remind himself they were just friends, and having a break from the sex seemed necessary for that, at least for now. So throughout the week he kept all the time he saw Taeyong strictly platonic, and went back to convincing himself it wasn’t so hard until he finally began to believe it again.
By Friday, the late shift had lost some of its appeal and Jaehyun was very glad it would be his last one. As he wandered through the building to make sure there were no students lingering anywhere so he could lock up, he was overcome with exhaustion. He was physically tired, from working late all week, and he was bored, since it was Friday and he hadn’t been motivated enough to start his homework so he’d spent the past five hours watching stupid videos on his phone. And he missed Taeyong. They’d seen each other almost every day that week, but they hadn’t slept together once, and Jaehyun had to recognize that just being friends with Taeyong really wasn’t enough anymore. Admitting that to himself didn’t bring him any clarity. Instead it felt just felt like defeat. He’d let his own weakness turn a friendship that was real into something that felt diminished and lacking. He didn’t know how to make that feeling go away, and he felt guilty that he couldn’t value Taeyong’s friendship as much as he should. And despite all that, he still wanted him so badly, the need for his touch like a pulsing heat that mocked him and his stupid fantasies as it traveled under his skin.
He locked the main doors carefully as he left the building. The nights were cooler now but the refreshing air did nothing to revive him. He took his time walking the couple blocks to his dorm, looking forward to sleeping but not looking forward to sleeping in an empty bed. His feet were practically dragging by the time he made it up to his hall, his eyes drooping so much that he didn’t see the shape outside his door until he was right in front of it.
Taeyong looked up from his phone and scrambled to his feet. “Hey, finally. How was work?”
Jaehyun laughed a little. It sounded hollow. “Work was fine.” He unlocked his door and stepped inside, turning on the light and hearing Taeyong follow him in. He dropped his bag on his desk and walked across the room to his dresser, yanking off his clothes and then rummaging in his drawers for a clean pair of shorts. He just wanted to lie down.
“Is now a bad time? I can go, if you want….” Taeyong’s voice was quiet, almost hesitant. It wasn’t how he usually sounded.
Jaehyun turned around, the shorts he was about to pull on clutched in his hand and all his other clothes scattered on the floor, and looked at him. Taeyong was watching him from near the door. His hands were in his pockets and his eyes were very big. He looked nervous. Jaehyun didn’t think Taeyong had ever been nervous around him before. He wasn’t sure why he was now. He could feel something giving way inside his chest, something loosening, but it wasn’t pleasant, or a relief. It hurt, like whatever was loosening was taking up all the space that his lungs needed for him to breathe.
He opened his mouth and words came out before he could carefully check and filter each one. “No, Yong, no, it’s never a bad time with you.” He dropped the shorts that were in his hand and walked across the room, and didn’t stop until his hands were on Taeyong’s face and their lips were pressed together. He felt Taeyong stiffen for a moment with surprise—he hoped it was only surprise—but then he relaxed, spreading his hands over Jaehyun’s bare chest where the huge loosening thing was continuing to spread inside him. Jaehyun wondered if Taeyong could feel it, underneath the skin and bones, this quivering, swirling ache that took up more and more space in his chest, right under Taeyong’s hands.
Jaehyun started walking Taeyong backwards towards his bed, pulling off Taeyong’s shirt as they went, then his pants and boxers, catching him tightly around his waist when he stumbled. He kept his arm around him as he lay him down carefully on the bed, leaning over him. He hadn’t stopped kissing him, and now, finally, Taeyong’s arms reached up and circled his shoulders, and Jaehyun licked into his mouth and rolled his hips down against him. He could feel the ache inside him spreading from his chest down his arms, into each fingertip, and lower, pooling in his stomach, shuddering up and down his legs, hardening his cock.
He could feel that Taeyong was hard too, and as Jaehyun continued to grind down against him Taeyong started to gasp and whimper. The sounds of his pleasure made whatever was inside him flare with heat. He was certain Taeyong could feel it now, whatever it was, bursting through his skin, but he didn’t care anymore. Maybe he wanted him to feel it. Maybe he wanted him to know.
He pulled away from Taeyong’s mouth just enough to slip two fingers past his wet swollen lips and Taeyong moaned. Jaehyun stared down at him and as their eyes met he knew Taeyong could see it: the obvious awe, the reverence that Jaehyun always felt when he looked at Taeyong but had always tried so hard not to show. He didn’t care. Taeyong whimpered again around his fingers and his eyes fluttered shut, and Jaehyun marveled at how sensitive he was.
Jaehyun pulled his fingers away and slipped them down between their bodies until he traced over Taeyong’s entrance. “Both,” Taeyong gasped.
“Hm?” Jaehyun murmured, kissing his jaw.
“Put them both in at once,” Taeyong breathed.
Jaehyun lifted his head a little and watched Taeyong’s eyes as he pushed both of his fingers slowly but purposefully into him. He saw Taeyong’s eyelids flutter, his eyebrows knitting together, his lips parting as he exhaled a soft moan. He pumped his fingers into him carefully, curling them and pressing into his most sensitive places, and watched every twitch of every muscle under Taeyong’s perfect skin.
Jaehyun lost all sense of time. Even with only his fingers inside him, he was more turned on than he’d ever been. And it wasn’t only that. He knew he’d completely let himself go, that all his secrets were oozing out of his every pore alongside his sweat. Everything he’d tried to keep hidden was rising to the surface.
He slipped his fingers out, and then reluctantly pulled away, as little as possible, to stretch over to the drawer near his bed for the lube and condoms. He kept his free hand on Taeyong’s stomach the whole time, his knees braced on either side of his thighs, worried that if he left him alone for a moment he’d roll over like he always did. But Taeyong stayed still, breathing hard, his stomach rising and falling under Jaehyun’s palm until he lay over him again, and kissed him hard as he pushed inside him all at once. Taeyong’s back arched and his stomach pressed up into Jaehyun’s, their skin sticking. Jaehyun slid an arm under his back, keeping his back arched and their bodies pressed together as he pulled out and then thrust back in again, hard enough that Taeyong let out a high-pitched moan, like the air had been punched out of him. Jaehyun did it again, and again, moving faster, and Taeyong moaned and whimpered every time he entered him, his walls already tightening sporadically around Jaehyun’s cock.
Jaehyun hovered above him and stared. He’d never gotten to see Taeyong’s face like this before. He’d never gotten to see what pleasure looked like on his perfect features. He’d never gotten to see what Taeyong looked like when Jaehyun filled him up.
Jaehyun fucked into Taeyong faster now, and he knew some of the moans and gasps filling the room were his, but he couldn’t tell which. Everything between them felt mixed up, their breaths swirling into each others mouths, their sweat mingling on their skin, their heartbeats echoing between their chests. He was certain Taeyong had to know, by now, how Jaehyun felt. He could sense it trickling over his skin in his sweat, I love you, radiating through his fingertips everywhere they pressed into Taeyong’s flesh, I love you I love you I love you . Jaehyun ducked his face into Taeyong’s neck and moaned his name. It sounded like I love you.
He felt Taeyong still beneath him. Jaehyun knew, logically, that Taeyong wasn’t actually still—his chest still rose and fall as he panted, and his body shifted on the bed as Jaehyun continued to fuck him—but something had shifted. Jaehyun was too far gone to consider stopping. He kissed Taeyong’s neck, and his shoulder, and said his name again. He knew Taeyong could hear what he was really saying, and he knew that was why Taeyong was hesitating beneath him, and it scared him, a thick sensation clinging in the back of his throat. But he held Taeyong tightly and hoped against hope that in a moment he’d feel his body relax.
Taeyong pushed against Jaehyun’s chest. No. Not yet. Jaehyun lifted himself up, forcing his hips to still and his arm to slide away from Taeyong’s back. “What?” His voice sounded raw.
Taeyong was looking away. Jaehyun remembered, just a few moments ago, seeing Taeyong’s eyes full of pleasure and, he’d thought, or imagined, something more. But now Taeyong’s dark irises were avoiding Jaehyun’s face completely. “I want to stop,” he said, quietly.
Jaehyun’s mouth felt dry. “Why?” He knew why.
Taeyong glanced at him and away. He looked torn. “I just do.”
“Do you wanna do it some other way? Is this not good for you?” He knew it had been good for Taeyong, but he asked anyway. He could hear a pleading edge to his voice but he didn’t care. He didn’t want Taeyong to leave, and maybe pretending the only problem was the position, and not the fact that there was no way to believe anymore that this meant nothing, would give Taeyong a way to stay without having to admit anything so terrifying. Jaehyun pulled out. It almost hurt to do but he forced out a self-conscious laugh and gestured to himself. “Don’t make me stop, Taeyong, please.” His heart was pounding and he knew he was afraid. “Let’s finish, come on.”
Taeyong’s eyes were still a little nervous as he looked at Jaehyun. But he nodded, and rolled over. “Just finish like this.”
Jaehyun stared down at Taeyong’s back, his ass tilted up for him, his legs already spread. He was beautiful, even like this. He was always beautiful. But Jaehyun’s heart hurt. Everything that had loosened inside him before seemed to retract, coiling up tightly again in his chest. He couldn’t swallow.
He put his hands on Taeyong’s hips and pushed back inside. It felt amazing, as it always did. But the tightness in Jaehyun’s chest was getting more painful and starting to take over all the other sensations. He started moving his hips, thrusting into the boy below him, who lay quietly except for his ragged breathing and took it. Any other time, this might have been okay. But this time, it wasn’t. This wasn’t how he wanted things to be, not after holding Taeyong so tightly. Not after letting go of so much.
His exhaustion rushed back like a weight. He closed his eyes and they burned. All he could see behind his eyelids was a flickering slideshow of Taeyong’s eyes, shifting between pure pleasure to that wary, closed off look. He didn’t even have the energy to wish he’d been more careful and hidden his feelings better. He hadn’t wanted to hide them. For a short time, maybe for the first time ever, he’d wanted to bare everything. And Taeyong had pushed him away. Maybe they both were cowards, Jaehyun for never being brave enough to ask for what he really wanted, and Taeyong for never letting himself get too close.
He stopped moving and pulled out. He was barely still hard. He stumbled off the bed, peeling off the empty condom. He felt dazed as he found the shorts he’d abandoned on the floor earlier, pulled them on, and hurried out of the room. He could hear Taeyong calling out behind him, but he let the door close and rushed down the hall to the bathroom. The dorm was quiet, most students probably out at this hour of a Friday night, and he was grateful for the silent, empty hallway. He slammed into the bathroom, and almost tripped taking off his shorts as he stepped into the shower stall, leaving them on the bench just inside the door, but he managed to stay upright and soon he was standing under scalding water, trying to catch his breath.
He heard the door open, and expected to hear it close again once whoever it was saw that the only shower was occupied, but instead the shower door banged open. Jaehyun jumped and backed up into the wall, blinking hot water out of his eyes. Taeyong was standing there in a pair of Jaehyun’s pajama pants that were too big and starting to get wet from the tiles underfoot, even though he was able to stand away from the stream of water, next to the bench where Jaehyun had left his shorts and where most people hung their towels. Jaehyun of course hadn’t thought about something so practical as a towel in his rush to leave, and, it seemed, neither had Taeyong.
“Taeyong? What are you— someone could come in!” Jaehyun said, because he couldn’t think of anything else to say.
Taeyong ignored him and stared through the stream of water that now separated him from Jaehyun, who was still pressed against the far wall. “What the fuck, Jae. Why’d you leave?”
Jaehyun’s heart was going crazy in his chest. This was all too much. Everything, all night, had been too much. “You told me to stop, so I stopped,” Jaehyun managed after a moment.
“No, Jaehyun, that’s not what happened.”
They looked at each other. Jaehyun couldn’t read Taeyong’s expression. He almost looked angry, but there was confusion there too, and something more cautious, like he wasn’t sure he wanted to know the answers to the questions he had.
The only sound was the water splashing on the tiles between them. “Why’d you ask me to stop?” Jaehyun asked softly. Taeyong stayed quiet. “Seriously, Taeyong, tell me why.”
Taeyong finally looked away, his frustration clear in the scowl he directed at the wall. “It just felt like too much. How you were, I don’t know, how you were kissing me, and saying my name. We’re just fucking around, right?”
Strangely, hearing Taeyong confirm what Jaehyun had imagined, hearing Taeyong admit that he really had somehow understood everything Jaehyun had been feeling, wasn’t as scary as he would have thought. Taeyong might be mad at him for it, or might not feel the same way, but the truth was out anyway. And even if Taeyong was mad, he was also here, in the shower of all places, because he’d followed Jaehyun. Just like he’d been waiting for him outside his door earlier. He wasn’t just letting him go, after all.
Jaehyun took a step towards him, through the stream of water and out the other side, until he stood at the edge of the shower and faced Taeyong who still stood near the stall door. “So that means I shouldn’t try to make you feel good?” Jaehyun whispered. His voice echoed off the tiles.
Taeyong hesitated, his eyes looking somewhere around Jaehyun’s feet. “I do feel good when we fuck anyway though. You don’t need to do all that.”
Jaehyun took another step closer and Taeyong looked up, the wariness back in his eyes. But he didn’t back away. “Then tell me you didn’t like it. Tell me you didn’t like it and that’s why you told me to stop.” Taeyong said nothing. “So let me make you feel good, Taeyong. Don’t tell me to stop,” he said gently, and dropped down to his knees.
He heard Taeyong catch his breath above him. The splashing water and the steam filling the shower made the thin cotton pajama pants cling to Taeyong’s skin, going translucent over his thighs and the heaviness between his legs. Jaehyun pressed his lips against his cock, feeling the warmth of it through the thin fabric. He mouthed at it, the material getting even wetter under his tongue, until Taeyong was hard. He pulled his pants down his thighs, and they dropped down to the wet tiles. Jaehyun kissed and sucked over Taeyong’s pale thighs until he shoved his fingers through Jaehyun’s wet hair and guided his mouth to where he wanted it. Jaehyun let himself be pushed, and once his lips were around Taeyong’s length he looked up at him, trying to tell him with his eyes that he could do whatever he wanted.
He heard Taeyong breathe out a little shakily as he pressed himself deeper into Jaehyun’s mouth. “Mmhm,” Jaehyun managed. He hoped it sounded like, More . Taeyong pressed deeper, then pulled back, and pushed in again. Taeyong was watching him carefully, and Jaehyun tried to look back, to let him know he was sure this was okay. Taeyong started moving more smoothly, finding a rhythm with his body even as the rhythm of his breath grew erratic. Jaehyun braced his hands on Taeyong’s thighs and let him fuck his mouth harder, his own cock aching between his legs. His heart was beating loudly but it was steady. He felt like he’d lost track of everything that had happened in the last week, even in the last hour, all the ups and downs. All he knew was that something had shifted, and Taeyong knew it had shifted too, but he was still here.
Taeyong’s movements were getting harsher, and Jaehyun squeezed his eyes shut, his throat raw and his lungs aching for a deeper breath, but he didn’t want to stop. Even when Taeyong gripped his head harder and Jaehyun gagged on his next thrust, it just sent a rush of feeling to his own leaking cock, and he tightened his fingers on Taeyong’s legs to keep him from pulling away. He heard Taeyong whimper above him. “Oh, Jae.” He looked up, his eyes watering. Taeyong’s head was tipped back and the stretch of his body, from navel to throat, was one long elegant line. Jaehyun moaned around his cock and felt Taeyong’s fingers tighten in his hair as he pressed forward and came down Jaehyun’s throat.
Jaehyun held on for as long as he could but then had to pull back, his throat spasming as he tried to swallow and catch his breath at the same time. Taeyong was still coming, gasping and whimpering, and Jaehyun licked and sucked at the head of Taeyong’s cock until he was finally done.
Taeyong sat down heavily on the bench next to them, and Jaehyun stiffly pushed himself up and sat down beside him. He glanced at the shower and wondered about turning it off, but the sound masked the noise they were making, and the steam kept them warm, so he left it. When he looked back, Taeyong was staring at him. “What are we doing, Jae?” he asked, his voice so quiet Jaehyun could barely hear it over the splashing water.
Jaehyun just shook his head, very slightly, and leaned forward carefully. Taeyong didn’t pull back. Instead his eyes dropped to Jaehyun’s lips, almost helplessly, and then they closed, and Jaehyun kissed him. His lips felt tender and his jaw ached but he touched Taeyong’s face and kissed him deeper. He moved his hands to his waist and pulled him closer, until Taeyong lifted himself up and straddled Jaehyun. Jaehyun wrapped his arms around his waist and held him close, and Taeyong held him back, one arm clinging to his shoulders as he reached back with the other hand and sank smoothly down onto Jaehyun’s dick.
There wasn’t a lot of space but Taeyong made the most of the space there was, rolling his hips and gradually picking up his pace. His arms were still around Jaehyun’s shoulders, holding him tightly. Jaehyun tightened his arm around Taeyong’s small waist, and moved his other hand over his body, trailing it down to squeeze his ass, then moving up his sides, over his taut stomach to his heaving chest. He covered his neck with kisses, licked down his collarbone, swirled his tongue over his nipples.
Taeyong let go of Jaehyun’s shoulders suddenly and leaned back, his back arching as he braced his hands on Jaehyun’s knees instead and began fucking himself on Jaehyun’s cock. There was no way the sound of the water was covering all the noise now, especially as Taeyong’s moans got louder. “Jae, fuck, oh my god,” Taeyong gasped, his ass slapping loudly down on Jaehyun’s thighs again and again. His hard cock bounced against his stomach, and Jaehyun curled his fingers around it. “No, don’t,” Taeyong said, his voice cracking. Jaehyun let go and put his hands on Taeyong’s waist instead, enjoying how slender it felt, how far his fingers could curve around his sides. He held him tighter and started thrusting up into him. Taeyong cried out. His head dropped back so far Jaehyun could only see his throat and the angles of his jaw.
Taeyong’s movements faltered. Jaehyun could tell he was trying to find his rhythm again but couldn’t, so he held him in place and kept fucking into him instead. Taeyong’s fingers were digging into his legs so hard it hurt. “Look at me,” Jaehyun gasped. Taeyong lifted his head. Jaehyun could see how close he already was just by looking at his face. His eyes were unfocused and sweat trickled down his temples and beaded across his nose. The color was high in his cheeks and every time Jaehyun slammed into him his face seemed to crumple with pleasure.
“Like this, don’t stop,” Taeyong gasped. Jaehyun knew he probably wasn’t thinking about what he was saying in this moment but his own words came back to him, Don’t tell me to stop. “I’m gonna come like this, I’m almost—Fuck, yes, please, please .” Jaehyun’s muscles were starting to ache and he hoped Taeyong really was as close as he looked. He tried not to slow down but his thighs burned. He could feel sweat coursing down his face and neck, pooling above his collarbones and running down his chest. His hands started to slip on Taeyong’s skin.
“Yong, you need to… I can’t—”
“I’m going to, Jae, please, fuck me. I’m close, I’m so close.”
Jaehyun moaned and he wasn’t totally sure if it was from pleasure or the way his legs were starting to shake. He tightened his grip on Taeyong’s waist with one hand and braced his other against the bench and managed to thrust up into him a few more times until finally Taeyong cried out and came. Jaehyun had to stop moving, partly because he was so tired, and partly because as soon as Taeyong came it pushed him closer to the edge and he had to hold himself back, almost startled by how sudden the sensation was. Taeyong was exquisite above him, his back arching so much it almost looked painful, the muscles in his stomach spasming as he came untouched. His walls were clenching so tightly around Jaehyun’s cock he had to hold his breath to stop himself from coming inside him.
Taeyong finally relaxed, whimpering quietly as he tried to catch his breath, his weight settling down onto Jaehyun’s lap as he sat up and laid his hands gently on the slick skin of Jaehyun’s chest. “Taeyong,” murmured Jaehyun. He reached down and lifted Taeyong’s ass until he could pull out, and Taeyong started stroking his cock. Taeyong’s hand was shaking, and then Jaehyun realized the rest of his body was shaking too. “Taeyong,” he whispered again. Taeyong’s hand moved faster. Some of his own come had reached up to his collarbone and Jaehyun leaned forward and licked it off. Taeyong shuddered and his hand squeezed involuntarily and almost painfully around Jaehyun’s length, making him groan. He pressed his face against Taeyong’s chest and breathed in his skin, feeling like he’d lost track of everything beyond the steam filled confines of this small shower stall. He felt Taeyong’s lips against his temple, and he groaned again into his chest as he came.
He kept his face pressed into Taeyong’s sternum for a long time, feeling his heartbeat against his lips, and Taeyong circled his arms loosely over Jaehyun’s shoulders.
Finally, Taeyong’s hushed voice broke the silence. “I think we need to stop doing this,” he whispered.
Jaehyun’s stomach twisted. He felt like he’d known this was coming. But he knew whatever had just passed between them wasn’t just one-sided anymore. He could still hear Taeyong’s wrecked voice, begging him not to stop. Those words had sounded a lot more genuine than these ones did now. He pulled back and looked up at Taeyong. “Why?” He would at least make Taeyong say it all, if he really meant it.
Taeyong avoided his eyes. “We’re friends.”
Jaehyun wiped a hand down his face, and then pushed his fingers through his sweaty hair, trying to give himself time to collect his thoughts and find words that made sense. “Then tell me that’s all I am to you,” he finally said quietly. “Tell me this is really just sex to you, and we’ll stop.” Taeyong didn’t say anything. Something complicated was happening in his eyes but his hands were still on Jaehyun’s shoulders. “Tell me you don’t feel anything more for me and I promise I’ll stop,” Jaehyun whispered.
“...I can’t tell you that.” Taeyong’s voice was, if possible, even quieter.
Jaehyun’s heart was beating fast, a mixture of hope and fear spurring it on. “So let’s not stop.” He reached up and touched Taeyong’s cheek, gently turning his face towards him. “Not yet.”
Now that they were looking at each other, Jaehyun could see the complicated feelings behind Taeyong’s eyes more clearly. He looked confused, even a little surprised, like he’d never expected to find himself in this situation. But there was still want in his dark eyes too, Jaehyun was certain, and something more tender, too. Jaehyun leaned forward and let his lips press, lightly as a breath, against Taeyong’s. Taeyong sighed and his eyes closed. Jaehyun let himself look for a moment, at the perfect features of the boy he loved, who he thought might start to love him too. “Taeyong?” he said gently. “We should probably get out of here before someone comes in. It’s kind of a miracle no one has….”
Taeyong opened his eyes. “Oh, right.” He climbed off Jaehyun’s lap and picked up the pajama pants he’d been wearing. Jaehyun pulled on his shorts and turned off the water. When he turned back Taeyong had pulled his pants on. They were wet from lying on the floor and didn’t leave much to the imagination. Jaehyun remembered pressing his mouth to the fabric earlier and feeling Taeyong’s warmth underneath. He could almost taste it. “Seriously?” Taeyong’s voice startled Jaehyun and he looked up. Taeyong looked tired but the hint of a smile played over his mouth. “We just had some sort of moment and now you’re back to staring at my dick. Typical.”
“Sorry, sorry,” Jaehyun said quickly, flustered by Taeyong’s suddenly amused tone. “I just… fuck, Taeyong, you don’t even know what you do to me.” He could hear his voice losing steam and his heart beat quicker just to finally say something like that out loud.
Taeyong was quiet for a beat. “I think I might.” He sighed. “I think I’ve maybe known for a while.”
Jaehyun didn’t know what to say. Taeyong reached out and took his hand and led Jaehyun out of the shower and then down the hall, back to his room. Jaehyun kept his eyes on the soaked hems of Taeyong’s pants. He thought his heart might burst out of his chest, and all Taeyong was doing was holding his hand.
When they reached Jaehyun’s room, it was a relief to finally dry off and change into warm clothes. Taeyong slipped under the covers of Jaehyun’s bed and lay on his side, facing the wall. Jaehyun lay down beside him on his back, remembering the only other time they’d slept next to each other. It had only been a week ago but it felt like longer. He knew things had changed since that night but he wasn’t exactly sure where they stood now. So he hesitated, like he had before, and stared at the ceiling with his hands clasped over his stomach to keep from reaching for Taeyong.
Taeyong lay quietly beside him, his breathing even, and Jaehyun thought he must have fallen asleep. But then he shifted in the dark, reaching behind him with one hand. He kept his back to Jaehyun and felt around with his hand until he brushed over Jaehyun’s side, and then found Jaehyun’s wrist and started pulling on it. Jaehyun looked at him, perplexed, but let himself be pulled, rolling towards Taeyong. Taeyong kept pulling until Jaehyun’s arm was over his waist. Jaehyun held his breath. He carefully moved closer until his chest was pressed against Taeyong’s back and his arm was tight around him. He nosed at the back of Taeyong’s neck, breathing him in, marveling at how soft and warm his skin was. His heart ached, but it wasn’t the same ache as before. “Taeyong?”
“Don’t sneak out in the morning this time.”
Taeyong snorted quietly. “Okay. Goodnight.”
“Night.” Jaehyun squeezed Taeyong a little tighter and closed his eyes.
- - -
Jaehyun woke the next morning to the sound of his door opening. He bolted upright. “Taeyong?” Taeyong jumped and turned around, his hand on the door. Jaehyun stared. “You said you wouldn’t leave.”
Taeyong seemed to recover from being startled and now he was trying not to smile. “I’m going to the bathroom, Jae.”
“Why didn’t you wake me up?”
“Jaehyun, I told you I wasn’t going to sneak out and I’m not. I’m not going anywhere.”
“You’re going to the bathroom.”
“Yes, I’m going to the bathroom.” Taeyong smiled gently. “I’ll be right back, seriously, go back to sleep.” Jaehyun just watched him, still feeling muddled from sleep and the momentary panic he’d felt when he’d thought Taeyong was leaving. Again. Taeyong shook his head, still smiling. “You’re so cute,” he mumbled, almost to himself, and slipped out the door.
Jaehyun stayed sitting up in bed, still feeling nervous. But sure enough, a few minutes later the door opened again and Taeyong came back in. He kicked off his shoes and crawled over the bed past Jaehyun, laying his head back down in the impression he’d left on the pillow. Jaehyun watched him, disbelieving. “Jaehyun, lie down. I told you, I just had to go to the bathroom, don’t be weird.”
Jaehyun slid back down under the covers and faced Taeyong, finally letting himself relax. They looked at each other for a moment, and Jaehyun supposed this was as good a time as any to ask the things he’d been wondering since the night before. “What did you mean last night, when you said you’ve known for a while about what you do to me?”
Taeyong picked at the edge of the pillowcase and kept his eyes on his fingers. “There were just moments when I started to wonder I guess, if there was more to this for you. Sometimes I’d see you look at me or feel the way you touched me and it would make me wonder.”
Jaehyun hesitated, nervous to ask what he wanted to next. But he had to know. “Was there ever more to this for you?”
Taeyong sighed. “I think… there has been, yeah. I never wanted this to be complicated so I just didn’t think about it. But it started to feel more and more like something I didn’t want to stop doing, so maybe that should’ve tipped me off. I’ve never felt all that bad before at the thought of ending something with someone. But thinking about ending things with you did feel bad. Which… kind of freaked me out.”
Taeyong’s fingers were still picking at the pillowcase, and a thread was starting to come loose. Jaehyun reached out and clasped his hand firmly, stopping him and then leaving their hands intertwined. Taeyong gave a small smile. Jaehyun felt nervous again, but he knew he had to say it. It felt dishonest not to. “I’ve liked you for a while.”
“Since before we ever kissed, since before Truth or Dare. Kind of… a long time before.” Taeyong just looked at him, his expression unreadable. “I’m sorry. I wouldn’t have ever… I wasn’t ever going to do anything, or say anything. I liked being your friend. I still do. Even after we kissed I was going to let it go, but then… this all happened. I didn’t mean to hide it from you, how I felt, I just thought if I said anything it would get weird and you’d make us stop and… I really didn’t want to stop.” His voice finished barely at a whisper, but at least he’d said everything.
Taeyong stayed quiet, just looking at Jaehyun thoughtfully. The minutes stretched on, and Jaehyun’s palm got clammy against Taeyong’s. Finally he couldn’t take it. “Are you mad at me?”
Taeyong’s eyes widened. “What? Why would I be mad?”
“Because I kept all that from you? I let you think it was just sex when… it really wasn’t for me, ever.”
Taeyong took a breath. “Honestly, I don’t really know how that makes me feel. A little weird, maybe. But not mad, not at all. I get why that would be… hard to say. And maybe this was inevitable. There were times, you know, before any of this happened, when I’d look at you, or find myself thinking about you, and it felt different. It felt like something. But I never let myself look at those moments too closely. I never thought about what they might mean. Maybe you were just smarter, that you actually knew how you felt. But… right after we kissed, I wanted to do it again. I guess I should have known that meant something.”
“Yeah, you did practically chase me into the bathroom.”
Taeyong turned his face into the pillow. “Oh my god, please don’t remind me. That was not my proudest moment."
Jaehyun laughed, warmth filling his chest. He still wasn’t sure exactly what would happen next but he knew he was happy. Everything was laid bare now, and Taeyong was still here. He wrapped his arm around him and squeezed him close. “Well, that was a great moment for me.”
He held Taeyong tighter, his lips against the top of his head, until Taeyong grunted into his chest and said, sounding strained, “I’m suffocating here.”
Jaehyun loosened his grip, still smiling. “Sorry.” He smoothed the hair off Taeyong’s forehead while he caught his breath, and then settled his arm more loosely over his waist. “So, does this mean I can take you out on a real date?”
Taeyong narrowed his eyes. “Fine. But please, nothing embarrassingly extravagant. We can just hang out, like normal.”
Jaehyun smirked. “Except I can kiss you.”
“Maybe, occasionally, fine.”
“And you’ll kiss me too.” Jaehyun scooched closer to him, smiling so widely it felt like he’d never stop.
“Yeah, I probably will.”
“And you’ll call me your boyfriend.”
Taeyong groaned. “Oh god, are we gonna have to tell all our friends? Is there gonna be some whole announcement? Wait,” he looked at Jaehyun, suddenly serious. “Do they know? About how you felt?”
“No, they don’t know, I never told anyone. But yes, I’m thinking we should hire a plane to skywrite the announcement in the sky, take care of letting the whole campus know at once. Easy.”
Taeyong tried to shove Jaehyun’s chest, which was hindered by the way his arms were squished between their bodies. “I know you’re joking but I’m still cringing just at the thought.”
Jaehyun kissed his forehead. “Who says I’m joking?”
Taeyong groaned. “I can already tell actually dating you is going to be a mortifying experience for everyone.”
Jaehyun kissed his cheek. “But you’ll love every second of it. I promise.” He gave Taeyong a peck on the lips and then kissed him again, letting his mouth linger this time.
Taeyong softened into the kiss and pulled Jaehyun closer. “Yeah, I suppose I will.”