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You Make My Smile Brighter

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“Jin!”

It’s bright in the room, definitely brighter than Jin likes. “Yeah, what do you want?” His words are muffled by the pillow he’s planning to lie on all day.

He hears Yoongi’s sigh all the way from the bathroom. “Listen, I don’t care how much of a morning person you are. I have to be at work in forty minutes and I ran out of mouthwash so I’m stealing yours. Where is it?”

“Mouthwash?” Jin yawns. It’s too early for this. “Was that the green stuff? I thought that was a fancy hair dye or something…” He’s too close to falling back asleep.

Somewhere in his fuzzy brain, Jin registers the sound of Yoongi filing through cupboards and drawers. “So you don’t have mouthwash?”

Jin shakes his head, even though Yoongi can’t see it from the bathroom. “Never have.”

The bathroom door slams and Yoongi’s familiar footsteps get louder. “You mean you’ve never used mouthwash ever? How about floss?”

Jin grunts and hopes that Yoongi will interpret it as a ‘no.’ He hears Yoongi mumble to himself about how his teeth aren’t even bad-looking. This is the photogenic piece of shit I have to deal with, and is promptly hit in the head by a thick stack of Post-it notes. Jin groans again in disapproval. “That’s my dentist’s number. Give him a call. You probably have George Washington teeth from eating shit all the time.”

Jin weakly pushes the yellow squares off the side of his mattress. He hopes Yoongi is late for work.

 


 

The dentist’s office doesn’t smell like he imagined. It smells like a small candle store trying too hard to mask the smell of saliva. And also a little bit like the aftermath of power tools, which does nothing to put Jin at ease.

To men sit at the reception desk, completely oblivious to Jin, one talking into a headset and trying not to laugh as the other blows air loudly in his direction. The troublemaking one stops annoying the other upon noticing Jin and immediately switches to a professional façade. “Welcome, my name is Taehyung. Do you have an appointment?”

“Yes.” Jin glances at the yellow paper square in his hand. “11:15, With Dr. Kim Namjoon?”

The headset-wearing one stop talking for a moment to give Jin a once-over and then just shares a look with Taehyung that Jin doesn’t know how to interpret. The receptionist sighs. “He has a dental assistant shadowing him today, do you mind or would you like to change appointment times?”

Jin doesn’t see why that would be a problem. But Headset Guy slips his microphone down long enough to whisper, “We have an opening at 1:30,” and Jin gets the feeling that they want him to switch times.

So he says, “No, I’m fine with my current time, thank you.”

His suspicions are confirmed when the Taehyung raises his eyebrows, types a few things into the computer, and says, “Kim Seokjin?” Jin nods. “Dr. Kim will be out shortly.”

He doesn’t wait long. Jin spends less than five minutes reading dingy, used waiting-room magazines before a door opens and out steps a sharp-looking man with a surgical mask resting over his tie and glasses in his slicked-back hair. Well. He hadn’t imagined Yoongi’s dentist to be attractive.

“Kim Seokjin?” God, his voice is something. Jin doesn’t even realize it’s his own name until a few moments later. He nearly panics and ends up raising his hand and standing up at the same time.

The dentist smiles. His teeth are nice, Jin thinks, and then almost smack himself because of course they’re nice. “Wonderful. If you’d follow me to the end of the hall on the right,” He has dimples. Jin finds himself walking down a narrow hallway and tries not to listen to the sounds that are indeed electric drills.

There’s already someone in the room, a dark-haired young man who is obviously pretending to be busy. “Kim Seokjin, this is Jeon Jungkook. He’s my assistant for the day.” Jin is almost sad to see half of the man’s face disappear behind the surgical mask. “I can assure you you’re in good hands, right Jungkook?”

“Right.” The assistant follows suit and puts his mask on.

Namjoon sits down and begins arranging different metal tools on a tray, all of which look intimidating and like they shouldn’t belong in a mouth. “So, Kim Seokjin, this is your first time here, correct?”

As he watches a particularly sharp instrument get put on the tray, Jin gulps. He doesn’t know what else to say besides, “Yes.”

“And are you experiencing any pain or discomfort in the teeth or gums?”

Jin thinks for a moment. “A bit in my teeth, but nothing out of the ordinary.”

Namjoon writes something down on a piece of paper. “Unfortunately, any tooth pain is abnormal.” Shit. “How did you hear about us, if I may ask?” His voice makes even the standard questions seem genuine.

“My room-mate recommended me to you, Min Yoongi.”

The dentist leans back in his chair. “Ah, yes. Are you the bakery room-mate, by chance?”

Jin is mildly shocked that Yoongi had mentioned him to another person. “The one and only.”

He hears a rather loud cough behind him. It’s Jungkook, who’s absently organizing the assortment of toothbrushes in a glass cabinet. “Can we stop flirting now and clean some teeth?”

Jin’s jaw almost drops.

Namjoon, however, hardly even flinches. “It’s not flirting, Jungkook, it’s procedure. You have to ask these questions to every new patient in order to get more new patients.”

“So you ask all the new patients if they’re the ‘bakery room-mate’?” Jin understands then why the two receptionists had wanted him to switch appointments; the kid is brutal.

There’s a pause before Namjoon gestures to the dental chair. “Why don’t you lie down?”

The chair is a bit short and Jin does not enjoy when it begins tipping him horizontally. “Jungkook will be cleaning your teeth today and then I’ll go back in to see if there’s anything you need to be worried about.”

The intern shines a light into his mouth, and there’s a determined look in his eyes than makes Jin worry his teeth will all be gone within the hour. “You have straight teeth,” Jungkook comments from behind the mask. Jin knows he has a good smile, but thinks Jungkook only says it to be nice. “Uh-oh, wait a second…” Yes, that’s the reaction Jin expected. Because realistically, there were only so many pastries one could eat before their teeth felt the aftermath. And Jin had exceeded that limit many years ago.

“Jungkook,” the dentist sighs, “Don’t say ‘uh-oh’ while cleaning a patient’s teeth. Now focus.”

Jungkook sputters, “But look at this one!”

“Which one, Jungkook, I need a number.” Jin doesn’t like the sound of their conversation.

“Um,” the intern peers into his mouth again, “Eighteen?”

Suddenly, Namjoon is far too close to his face. Jin almost asks him to back up, and then remembers it’s Namjoon’s job to get up in other people’s faces. “Twenty-one. Nice try, though; you had a .03-percent chance of getting it right.” Jin hopes that wasn’t mental math, because he really has a thing for intelligent men and it’s too early on a weekday to be feeling like this.

Jungkook is done with the cleaning five minutes later. While Jin rinses his mouth out, the boy says, “This is normally where I’d say, ‘Dr. Kim will be right with you’, but he’s already here, so…”

And then Namjoon is hovering over him, intensely concentrated, and his gloved fingers are in Jin’s mouth. That’s the worst part, because it’s not intended to be even remotely sexual, but Jin’s mind can’t help itself. “What’s the damage?” He asks after Namjoon’s done and Jin is sitting upright again. He hadn’t said anything the whole time, and Jin is worried.

Namjoon pulls down his mask and although Jin had mentally objected when he first put it on, his mind is currently screaming for Namjoon to pull the mask back up because now he won’t pay attention to anything the man says. “I would say I’ve seen worse, but…” Namjoon fiddles with his glasses and he needs to stop that, “you have three cavities, you need a filling on your back molar, and your gums are severely inflamed. Also, your enamel is greatly deteriorated on those teeth without cavities, but it’s all fixable.” The whole time, the word ‘money’ flashes in Jin’s mind.

He’d seen it coming, all the damage. He just doesn’t want to open his wallet for it. “Well, I can pay for this appointment, but I don’t have dental insurance. So, how long will I last before all my teeth fall out?”

Namjoon smirks. He really should put the mask back on. “As we say in the world of dentistry, ‘dental care is cheap, but negligence is expensive.’” Jungkook pulls a face from the corner of the room and mutters, This guy. “Instead of saying ‘fixable’, I should have said, ‘reversible.’ If you floss, it does wonders for your gums and cleans 35-percent more of your teeth. And easier said than done, but try to cut out as much sugar as possible from your diet.” No. No, no, no. “What do you typically eat for breakfast each day?”

Jin chooses his words carefully. “Leftovers.”

The dentist’s laugh is unexpected. “But you work at a bakery, so what are ‘leftovers’, exactly? A cream puff? Raw sugar cane?” Jin doesn’t even care if Namjoon is teasing him, he just wants the man to keep talking. “That’s how you reverse the cavities, is by cutting out sugar and eating more protein to rebuild enamel. It’s a shame, because currently, you are what you eat.” He hears Jungkook gag. Is Namjoon trying to call him…sweet? “Also,” he reaches behind him to rummage around in a cabinet. “Use this toothpaste. It’s even travel-sized.” At this point, Jin is completely smitten for Namjoon. Because the man is doing everything possible to help Jin on an extremely low budget. And he’s definitely intelligent. “As for the filling—well, how about you come back again sometime and I’ll see if I can give you a discount?”

Jungkook is juggling the act of laughing and trying not to fall out of his chair. “Geez, he’s gonna start sabotaging your teeth just so you come back.” He walks Jin back out to the lobby anyway, mumbling something that sounds like, ‘He just wants you to have a nice mouth in case you give him a—’ before he’s called into the room by Namjoon, who apparently realized the mistake of leaving him alone with Jin.

The receptionists are surprised to see Jin smiling even when he swipes his credit card and trips going out the door.

 


 

“Yoongi,” Jin has mentally prepared himself for the question: “Are you, by any chance, attracted to your dentist?”

His room-mate sighs. “I’m attracted to his business, I guess. He is my dentist.” There’s a pause, and then Yoongi’s eyes widen so slightly in surprise. “Wait, you wanna fuck my dentist? And you’re asking for permission?” He laughs at Jin’s face, which is significantly more red than usual, even behind the shield of his hands. “Remind me not to recommend you to my chiropractor, then; he’s hot as fuck. Alright, Dr. Kim’s all yours. Go nuts. Just don’t use mouthwash as lube or try dental floss bondage or some crazy shit like that.”

Two days later, when Yoongi notices the new anti-cavity toothpaste resting on the bathroom counter, he doesn’t say anything.