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Want and Resent

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They’re lying in bed together, facing but not touching each other. Jessica’s browsing through her phone and Taeyeon’s—Jessica’s not sure what she’s doing, exactly, but knowing Taeyeon she’s probably thinking.

Jessica glances away from her phone to see Taeyeon watching her. She had been looking in Jessica’s direction but not exactly looking at her earlier, but now her eyes are entirely focused on her.

Jessica smiles a little. “Hi.”

Taeyeon’s mouth quirks up at the corner. “Hi.”

Jessica gives her phone a little wave. “Yuri wants to throw Tiffany a surprise birthday party and she wants us to help.”

“What does she want us to do? Buy all the pink things in the party aisle?”

“No, but that’s a great idea, we should do that.” Jessica’s fingers fly over her phone screen as she types out a reply. “Yul’s freaking out because she wants everything to be perfect.”

“Hmm. That sounds like her.” Taeyeon leans over, resting her head on Jessica’s shoulder. “Are you sure you’re the best person to be giving out surprise birthday party throwing advice?”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“You planned one for me and I was literally the second person to find out about it.”

“That’s because I made the grave error of asking Tiffany for help with a surprise.”

Taeyeon grins. “And that’s why I didn’t ask her for help for your birthday.”

“You didn’t throw me a party.”

“Exactly. Why bother with parties when I can just surprise you alone?”

Jessica shivers as she remembers the surprise Taeyeon had gotten her. She definitely took her time to unwrap her present.

“Do you want to surprise me right now?” she asks playfully, putting her hand on Taeyeon’s thigh.

Taeyeon’s eyes trail slowly from her hand to her eyes. She takes Jessica’s hand and moves it away from her leg but keeps it in her own.

“Tae?” Jessica asks in confusion.

“Do you know that you talk in your sleep?” Taeyeon says conversationally.

Jessica blinks. “I do? I thought I slept like a log.”

“You do, but like.” Taeyeon shrugs. “A talking log.”

“A talking log,” Jessica repeats.

“You don’t move at all but you talk sometimes,” Taeyeon clarifies.

Nobody has ever told her that before. “What do I say?” she asks curiously.

“You speak in English a lot so I don’t understand all of it.”

“But you understand some of it.” Taeyeon’s English is better than she gives herself credit for. Taeyeon’s better than she gives herself credit for. “What did I say for those parts?”

Taeyeon’s looking at her with such intensity that it makes Jessica want to look away, but she doesn’t, she holds Taeyeon’s gaze and tries to read some of the volumes in her eyes.

“You speak in Korean too,” Taeyeon says offhandedly. “I understand those parts.”

“Well, I sure hope so, because otherwise I’d have to question what language you can speak.”

Taeyeon smiles widely enough for her dimple to pop out. Jessica definitely doesn’t stare. Nope.

“Also.” Jessica narrows her eyes. “Don’t change the subject.”

Taeyeon gives her an innocent look. “I thought the subject was the things you say when you’re sleeping.”

“And what are these things?”

“I don’t know, I’m nolingual.”


“Well, you’re bilingual and Joohyun is like quadrilingual and I’m nolingual.”

Jessica laughs. “You’re talking to me right now. How can you do that if you’re nolingual?”

“I can speak Jessica,” Taeyeon says very seriously.

“Can you?”

Taeyeon nods, the motion making her fringe fall into her eyes. Jessica reaches forward and tucks it behind her ear, being careful to avoid the tender skin where her new tattoo is.

“Do I speak Jessica in my dreams?”

“You do,” Taeyeon says, “and I understand every word.”

Jessica’s smile takes over her face, and she can’t suppress it even when she kisses Taeyeon, but Taeyeon’s mouth curves against hers, fitting to hers, and she doesn’t have to. She feels like they’re sharing a smile, a breath, a language.

And she wonders if Taeyeon can hear the three words she’s branding against her lips. She thinks she does.