"gather around, everyone! it's time to draw the names to our annual secret santa!" taehyung calls.
yoongi looks up from his phone. he can see newbie tattoo artist jungkook sitting right opposite to him, annoyingly organizing his equipment into a drawer. he can't help but involuntarily huff at the sight.
it's almost the end of the shift of yet another day of work at hyungsang tattoo & piercing studio. two weeks from christmas marks the drawing of the names for their traditional secret santa exchange, when every employee that works there participate as a way to celebrate their year of hard work and partnership between the artists. it's yoongi's second year working there as main body piercer.
"you all know the drill, right? just draw a piece of paper from the santa hat. if you take your own name, just put it back and draw it again," taehyung says with a wink, approaching yoongi's side, offering him a santa hat filled with everyone's names.
yoongi reaches for the hat, shuffles it a little and picks up a tiny piece of paper. when he opens it up, it reads, in black ink: jeon jungkook. great. he tries very hard not to grimace at it, instead he folds the paper again and throws it in his backpack.
yoongi is a man that doesn't truly believe in hate, as he likes to be a person that at the very least tries to attract some positivity towards his life. however, he seriously, really, truly, with every force of his being, despises jungkook with the passion of a million suns. he just really can't stand him. and the fact that jungkook is always being a little shit to him doesn't do much to make yoongi like him.
"all of your lists of possible gifts i asked you to do is on the cork board, please take it out when no one is watching to keep the secrecy!" taehyung says as he keeps passing around the hat. yoongi is finishing organizing his stuff on his backpack when he sees someone approaching in the corner of his eyesight.
"hi." jungkook's voice comes directly from behind him. "i want a septum piercing."
"okay, and?" yoongi replies.
"and i want you to do it."
"sure, we'll do it tomorrow." yoongi throws the backpack on his shoulder and turns around to leave.
"no," jungkook holds yoongi's shoulder, keeping him in place. "i want you to do it now."
"can't you ask taehyung for that? i'm kinda leaving," yoongi says, trying to get himself out of jungkook's grip. the last thing he needs right now is to be few inches away from jungkook's face. touching him. with a needle, of all things.
"no, i want you to do it," jungkook says, not looking like he's willing to give further explanation on the matter.
"because i do," jungkook shrugs.
yoongi examines him for a second. as much as he doesn't want to, he can't look at jungkook's puppy eyes and say no to him. it's physically impossible to do so. "...alright," he sighs, pointing to the chair. "get in there."
jungkook sits, happily humming a song (annoyingly, as per usual) while he waits for yoongi to get everything ready. jungkook has lots of piercings on his ears, but none on his face. yoongi recommends him a simple silver ring that it's easier to take care of and heals faster, and jungkook agrees. as much as yoongi hates the guy, he's been a professional body piercer for five years. so he acts like it.
"okay, i have to warn you that this might hurt a little--"
"i'm not really worried about that," jungkook interrupts. "got my entire sleeve tattoo in like, two sittings."
cocky son of a bitch. "take a deep breath," yoongi says as he sticks the needle on his nose. jungkook's breath doesn't even hitch.
when jungkook looks at himself in the mirror, he gives yoongi a huge smile. "wow, it looks so great! thank you! you know, i always hear the client's getting out of here saying that you have the lightest and soft hands,” he says. “now i can confirm that it's indeed very true."
yoongi offers him a small smile, muttering a quiet thanks . he watches jungkook as he waves goodbye and leaves.
before yoongi leaves as well, he looks around his shoulders to see if anyone else is looking and grabs jungkook's wishlist for the secret santa from the cork board, shoving it on his pocket quickly. he spends the entire way home processing what the hell just happened. how could he be so unlucky? he could've drew any name from that stupid santa hat.
he could have taken seokjin, who actually owns the studio, and he would just gift him a fishing rod because the man doesn't ever shut up about fishing and riding boats, and he'd be considered the employer of the year. he could have taken taehyung, who he's actually good friends with, and he would gift him anything handmade, because he's always saying how much he appreciates the effort put into things. he could even take namjoon and give him a matching shirt because he's always complimenting him and going on about what a great taste for clothes yoongi has. but no. oh, no. he had to take jeon jungkook, who's wishlist contains:
1) a box with 12 banana milk bottles (preferably binggrae because it's my favorite brand!); 2) a set of 36 watercolor pencils; 3) the ugliest christmas sweater you can find; and 4) pencil sharpeners because i always lose mine. thanks! :)
yoongi enters the kitchen of the apartment he shares with jimin and hoseok to find jimin already there, standing over the sink washing the plates. he slams the piece of paper he was carrying on his hand the entire way home on the fridge. "his list of possible gifts is absolutely ridiculous," yoongi announces to jimin with absolutely no context.
"let me guess: you decided to come here and complain just because i'm doing the dishes and i can't run away from you, didn't you?" jimin says.
"you know i would never do that," yoongi pats jimin on the back. "now tell me, what kind of grown up adult would ask their colleague to gift him a box with 12 banana milk bottles?"
"hey, at least that's very creative, you gotta give him that. so you took your crush for secret santa, huh?" jimin smirks.
"he's not my crush!" yoongi pushes jimin's arm lightly. "and i don't know what it is, jimin-ah. he's just… maddening."
"is he really? is it because he looks all punk rock and stuff, but that one time you caught him dancing the entire choreography of 'fancy' by twice when he thought he was alone at the studio?"
"don't even remind me of that. i think the image is inked in my corneas," yoongi says, leaning on the fridge. "but it's not that. after we drew the names he completely cornered me and said he wanted me to literally dig a hole on his face--"
"he asked me to give him a nose piercing."
jimin blinks twice. "getting his nose pierced is barely digging a hole into his face, hyung." he can tell he's concerned for his friend's mental state. yoongi kinda sounds insane.
"you're missing the point, jiminie! the point is: why me? he's closer to taehyung anyway. we barely ever talk. he's been working right by my side for 6 months and we never talk!"
"and whose fault is that," jimin says. yoongi rolls his eyes. "has it ever crossed your mind that maybe, just maybe , he likes you? and you're being an ass to him for absolutely no reason?"
"NO REASON OTHER THAN MAYBE YOONGI LIKES HIM TOO," hoseok, who yoongi didn't even know was home, manages to scream from what looks like is the bathroom.
"useless, the both of you," yoongi says elevating his voice so hoseok can hear, pointing at jimin and towards the direction of the bathroom. "what the heck should i do?"
yoongi hears the toilet flushing and hoseok entering the kitchen. "i don't know, hang out with him? get to know him a little better? maybe you'll find out he isn't that bad, and you're just a grumpy old man."
"i'm not an old man," yoongi retorts, not trying to defend himself from being called grumpy because, well. he admits he can be grumpy sometimes. "but he's such a little shit to me! you know what he did the other day? i could swear he changed the needles from the place i keep them, just so i had ask him where they were!"
"yeah, hyung, i think you're right," hoseok gives in.
"thank you," yoongi huffs.
"he obviously hates you," hoseok continues, emphasizing every syllable of the word. "i mean, he wasn't coming up with an excuse to make conversation with you because he likes you at all. he was just trying to do the lamest high school prank ever. congratulations hyung, you got punk'd!"
jimin snorts and starts laughing along with hoseok, and yoongi feels his cheeks getting red. "you know what, guys? i'm kinda hungry, so if you want to decide what to order for dinner, i'll be in my room googling how to make new friends on wikihow!"
they coo at yoongi as he storms out from the kitchen and proceeds to lock himself in his bedroom. what do jimin and hoseok know about this stuff anyway? what do they mean with 'maybe he likes you', 'maybe you like him too'? surely they’re mistaken. because of course he hates jungkook. and it’s tangible that the feeling is mutual. that’s simply ridiculous. yoongi urgently needs new friends.
you see, there are currently seven things min yoongi hates about jeon jungkook:
1. how he's automatically good in everything he does;
2. how he still drinks banana milk even though he's a 23 year old adult that should act his age;
3. how his laugh sounds like chalks on a board;
4. how he keeps a bowl of water for the stray dogs right in front of the tattoo parlor, which leads yoongi to slip with the splash of water almost everyday;
5. how great his thighs look when he wears skinny leather jeans;
6. how he sings to distract his clients from the pain when he's tattoing them;
he could list some more items, probably. his hatred for jungkook doesn’t just stop there. and yeah, maybe checking out how great the guy’s legs look every once in a while doesn’t exactly count as hate per se, but who said he can’t find his nemesis attractive? when yoongi pointed that out to jimin over tea the other day he said, snickering under his breath: “hyung, please. he’s not your nemesis, he's not your enemy, he’s not even your work beef. he’s just your midlife crisis.” to which yoongi answered by smacking his arm and telling him to fuck himself, because he’s only two years older than him after all, and he should learn to respect his elders.
but yet. could he be wrong and his friends be right? for once? does he like jungkook?
so in the next few days, yoongi tries. he tries really hard not be annoyed when he almost slips on his feet entering the studio, yet again, because at least the stray dogs have water to drink from, thanks to jungkook. that was the whole point all along, and not how it made yoongi feel.
and when jungkook starts humming a song while tattooing, as he always do, yoongi actually pays enough attention to recognize it's a song he really likes, and notices that jungkook's voice is actually kinda nice. he also notices how it puts the clients at ease, especially when they're really afraid of needles or when they're tattooing a really painful spot. and isn't it nice that they chose a tattoo artist that is so... caring?
and suddenly, when seokjin blurts out another one of his daily jokes that make jungkook laugh out loud, yoongi doesn't think it sounds like chalks on a board anymore. as he learns more and more about him, he starts to find it endearing. jungkook's presence doesn't bother him anymore, and it spins his mind right round that somehow he started to find himself in situations that are making him realize how much he likes jungkook. and wants to kiss him. and shout at him that all the reasons he thought he hated him for are actually ones that make him lose his mind because of how much he likes him. and that he should always be wearing skinny pants because his thighs are a work of art. maybe not in this particular order.
and then a couple of days later, unexpectedly, jungkook asks if yoongi wants to go out for a drink after work. and yoongi, against all odds, against his own self, accepts . and there's not a single moment where they stop talking, they don't ever run out of things to talk about, because they have so much in common; from how they got into body art, the love they share for their work and how proud they are of it, to their addiction for lamb skewers and how they like silly 80's songs they can sing dramatically at the karaoke bar.
the pub they're at sort of looks like a cave, but in a good way. the music is fine, the drinks are alright, and the lighting is helping jungkook's eyes to stand out; yoongi notice they never stop sparkling.
"not ordering banana milk?" yoongi teases after ordering them two cups of irish bomb.
"hey, it tastes good! you should try it sometime, hyung" jungkook defends himself, but he's grinning the entire time.
"i did. when i was eight," yoongi answers, and it lets out a wonderful laugh from jungkook's mouth. it leaves yoongi wanting to make him laugh more often. "don't be a baby, try not to choke while you drink it."
"please," jungkook says, smirking. "i'm a pro."
"you're so full of yourself," yoongi remarks. jungkook's cocky little smile isn't doing him well.
"and if i am?" jungkook replies, quirking an eyebrow at him. why are his eyebrows shaped so perfectly? why is yoongi only noticing this now? what exactly is happening?
"brat." yoongi tries not to panic because oh my god he looks so good , and instead just shouts chaotically, "finish your drink, jungkook-ah!"
jungkook picks up the cup and takes a sip. "i didn't get to say thank you again for my piercing. i really really liked it."
"it's no problem. you look really good, by the way" yoongi blurts without thinking. flustered, he looks down to his drink and stutters "i- i'll think of something you can do for me in return."
"what was that?" the corners of jungkook's mouth go up in a smirk. it's like he knows the power he's getting over yoongi and he's using it on his favor. yoongi knew jungkook was evil.
"ink," yoongi quickly responds. "something ink related. a tattoo. with a needle. a drawing." the words keep coming. "i didn't mean anything other than exactly that. a tattoo from you is exactly what i want."
"alright hyung, i think that's enough alcohol for today," jungkook says jokingly, taking yoongi's cup away from him.
and that's how yoongi got here. it's finally the day of the secret santa. the studio is almost unrecognizable due to how many christmas decorations they managed to hang around. they gathered all the chairs in a semicircle and are ready to start revealing who they got, and they will have a little party right after. yoongi finds himself holding jungkook's gift for dear life. he didn't get him anything from the wishlist, instead having found exactly the perfect thing for him elsewhere.
"does anyone want to go first?" taehyung asks.
yoongi swallows dry. it's probably for the best if he goes first and just gets it over with. he stands up and feels all eyes on him.
"for the past couple of weeks i've been getting to know my secret santa better," yoongi starts, nervously fiddling the wrapped gift from one hand to another. "and in the midst of it, i ended up learning a little about myself too in the process. truth is, i noticed the things that, i'm not gonna lie, annoyed me about him in the beginning, are actually things i came to admire a lot; it's essentially how he cares deeply about everyone around him."
people around him start to murmur and nod, acknowledging that yoongi's secret santa is a boy. he can see taehyung sitting straighter on his seat.
"i mean, i can't think of anyone else who would set up a bowl of water so the stray dogs could drink from it right in front of our studio," yoongi continues, now looking at a wide eyed jungkook who's just realized he's the one yoongi's talking about. "that water bowl makes me trip every single time, and it made me so mad that i wasn't paying attention to the most special thing: the gesture. he's kind, he's truly kind, and i hope we get to know each other even better now, jungkook-ah."
jungkook stands up shyly and walks towards yoongi's direction while everyone around them starts clapping, whistling and seokjin's voice can be heard shouting 'nice, yoongi-ah!' and the next thing he knows is they're hugging. yoongi murmurs, "surprise, it was me all along" to which jungkook replies with a wink, "you're in a for a treat, hyung."
everyone goes silent again waiting for jungkook to go about his reveal, and yoongi sits, feeling relaxed now that he's got that whole thing over with. it was quite a journey.
"well," jungkook clears his throat. "when i got this person as my secret santa i was one hundred percent sure he didn't like me. i guess after his speech i wasn't really wrong, was i?" everyone laughs, turning their heads to look at yoongi, who looks bewildered.
wait a minute. he took yoongi? what even are the odds of the two of them getting each other for secret santa? did taehyung set them up for this? the bastard. the nerve. yoongi is definitely cornering him to have a talk later.
"so the first thing i did," jungkook continues, "right after we drew the names, was ask him to give me a piercing." he points at the little ring on his septum. "i didn't even think it through, because he could have added two plus two and figured out i got him, but i wanted to show him that i wasn't all that bad. and that i liked him. the best way i found to do that was proving that i trust him. it kinda worked, right, yoongi hyung?"
yes it did , yoongi mouths. it draws another smile from jungkook's lips, more confident this time. yoongi sort of wants the smiles to keep coming. it's like he opened a door where he started noticing all of jungkook's different types of smiles and now he just cannot stop thinking about it. the applauses from their colleagues start again, and taehyung decides it's time for his secret santa reveal, so he shoves jungkook to the side and starts his speech.
"here," jungkook hands yoongi the wrapped present, sitting on his side. "i hope you like it, hyung. i worked very hard on it."
yoongi looks curiously at him. he shreds the paper and sees a small sized canvas with a stunning painting of what looks like himself - or, well, a styled version of himself, eating a tangerine . yoongi looks up to jungkook, and he can't figure out what to say, so he just stares fondly at jungkook. he can't believe this boy exists. he can't believe how he couldn't be more wrong about him in the first place.
"i. i noticed how sometimes you get back from lunch break and eats tangerines, so i started kinda sketching you, i guess?" jungkook rapidly responds, insecure about yoongi's silence.
"no, jungkook-ah, this is incredible!" yoongi manages to exclaim. "thank you so much!"
jungkook sighs in relief, leaning against the uncomfortable plastic chair. "i was a little nervous because i didn't stick to your wishlist."
"i couldn't care less about my wishlist, because this- this is amazing! it's so detailed and, wow. thank you, kook-ah. really." yoongi smiles happily to jungkook, gums and all. "and actually i didn't stick to your wishlist either, so that makes us even." yoongi laughs.
jungkook excitedly tears up his gift and his eyes immediately get brighter when he sees the fancy sketchbook yoongi got him. "wow, hyung! this is so much better than the stuff on my list!"
"now you can keep sketching me eating tangerines, i suppose," yoongi smiles shyly. "i didn't think you'd be, you know. watching me do my stuff."
"how was i supposed not to?" jungkook answers.
people are still keeping their reveal coming, but they're nothing but white noise at this point. neither of them pays attention, until it all ends, and seokjin (now wearing a hat shaped like a tuna fish) turns off the ceiling lights saying something about getting the party started, namjoon turns the radio up, loudly blasting some boygroup hit, and yoongi and jungkook slowly isolate themselves from others.
to be quite honest, yoongi's heart is pounding inside his chest, because the flirting and the teasing keep happening from both parts and it doesn't seem like it will stop anytime soon. they stand side by side against the wall in a corner, plastic cups filled with cheap wine in hand, and jungkook keeps trying to shamelessly play footsie with yoongi, whose cheeks are definitely getting more heated by the minute, even though it's freezing outside of the tattoo parlor.
"so you don't hate me anymore, huh?" jungkook offers yoongi the most charming smile ever, teasingly pinching his waist with his pointer finger, making yoongi squirm.
"i still hate that you're good at everything automatically, but i can learn to live with that."
"it can come in handy sometimes, you know,” jungkook says, eyes gazing straight at yoongi's lips.
"yeah?" yoongi gulps. jungkook is getting closer and closer, it's making yoongi get cross eyed. jungkook has a tiny mole beside his bottom lip, and yoongi doesn't keep his eyes off it. "how's that so?"
jungkook boldly closes the gap between them and kisses him. and yoongi actually see stars when he feels how soft his lips are, and how perfectly well their tongues roll with each other, as if that's something they've done before. it feels right, it feels good. and yeah, he gives in. jungkook is infuriatingly good at everything he does on the first try, but now yoongi's seeing he can get some benefits from that.
they break apart, catching their breath, their first kiss being much more intense than both of them expected. but now that they started, yoongi can't get enough of it. so he doesn't give jungkook time to say anything else, he just wraps his hands around his waist, pulling him closer, and they kiss, kiss, kiss.
as they continue kissing, and exploring, and touching, and losing themselves on each other, and completely forgetting they're in a lame christmas party with their co-workers, yoongi learns that the line between love and hate is truly fine. he can't believe how long it took him to realize that.
now, there are seven things min yoongi loves about jeon jungkook (and he could probably list some more, given the chance):
1. how his eyes carry the entire galaxy within them;
2. how the mole right beside his bottom lip kinda looks like a piercing sometimes;
3. how his two front teeth are slightly bigger than the rest and it makes him look like a bunny when he smiles;
4. how sometimes a single strand of his hair falls on his eyes and he shakes his head adorably to set it into place;
5. how great his thighs look when he wears skinny leather jeans;
6. how he kisses almost as softly as his singing voice is;