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the line is too long for this bullshit. one register’s down, yoongi’s jabbing at the buttons of the only functioning one and grumbling through the mandatory pleasantries, and hoseok’s just loitering behind the counter to help answer questions. he’s not much of a help, but he looks pretty damn good today (gotta love that choker life), and he catches some of the customers glancing longer than usual.

“um, ‘scuse me?”

hoseok’s eyes catch on brown eyes. fluffy pink, pink hair that’s shaved on the side and flops over his eyebrows. lips thinned into a nervous line and dimpled cheeks. what a catch. he’s not holding anything in his hands to check out, and yoongi looks vaguely irritated. per usual.

“yes? how may i help you?” hoseok replies with his default customer smile, laced with just a little something extra.

he flusters noticeably, even though hoseok’s close to faking his amicability, bottom lip rolling out of his teeth’s tight hold and oh my god.

hoseok catches himself.

“i was looking over in the men’s section, and i was wondering if you had any not-festive sweaters?” the end of his sentence lilts off, endearing awkwardness lifting the atmosphere around checkout. yoongi snorts and hoseok swats his ass and murmurs a ‘don’t make fun of the customers, i’ll be back’.

“ah, come with me and we’ll see.” hoseok removes himself from behind the desk, deftly maneuvering around the sharp corners and into the men’s section. “are you looking for something like this?”

cutie makes a face of distress, disdain almost, and hoseok chuckles, hooking it back onto the rack.

“not your style? ok, dimples, inform me so i can help.”

“it’s namjoon…” dimples—namjoon—quips, actual dimples popping, and it almost doesn’t make any sense until hoseok clicks the pieces together.

hoseok’s all eye-smiles when he replies with his own, fingering the shiny golden nametag on his chest to emphasize his words. he’s thumbing through the rest of the rack until something jumps at him. he’s been through this floor enough times to know the racks inside-out, upside-down. “ooooh, idea. come with me, yeah? i think i have something you might like.”

namjoon, who hasn’t even voiced his preferences yet, looks skeptical, but follows, eyes flickering from hoseok’s shoulders to the back of his legs and up again. too much.

“how about this one?” it’s modest, heather grey, and closer to one of those oversized cardigans than a ‘sweater’ per say, but it’s nice. it won’t be in the women’s section when it’s in his closet, in any case.

namjoon says as much and hoseok beams over at him like the sun got stuck between his teeth and made a home, and it’s honestly one of the warmest things namjoon’s ever been witness to. something he’d like to see again. and again. and some more after that.

“c’mon back with me to the register if that’s all you need, and hopefully we can check you out right away.” and there’s nothing really suggestive to his tone, but it springs a litany of flirtatious comebacks in namjoon’s mind: ranging from ‘i need your number, too’ to ‘i don’t need a register to check you out’. he stops himself before they slip, rosy ears all he has to show for it as he ducks a shoddy nod when hoseok turns back to look at him.

hoseok’s lips quirk into a smirk, and even if he writes his phone number onto the back of the receipt instead of a coupon code like he says, namjoon definitely doesn’t mind.