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On My Life (I Swear)

Chapter Text

 

Hoseok was starving.

 

He was so ready to go eat, kinda feeling like eating some street food. He quickly made his way to where he knew some of the best food stalls were. When he gets there, he locates his favorite food stall, delicious and cheap, waiting for his turn to eat some of the street food. There were a lot of people out at this time of day, prime dinner time, but when Hoseok walks up there was only the ahjumma who ran the cart and a young man standing at the food stall. Hoseok wasn't paying any attention but he glances up a few times when he hears the ahjumma laughing at something the boy says. The boy smiles at her too and Hoseok vaguely registers it before he goes back to his food. He was hungry today. He was about to lift his food to his mouth when it happened.

 

Nobody expects it when suddenly there's a gasp in the crowd and another young boy comes running through. He snatches the purse right from the ahjumma's arms and runs right off, bumping into people, pushing and shoving to get away as fast as possible. Adrenaline barely kicks into Hoseok's system by the time he realizes that the tall boy at the stall had already taken off into a sprint after the guy.

 

Concern sprouts in his stomach like a plant popping up from a seed and Hoseok feels his legs moving along after them before he registers it in his head. He follows the path the robber and the food stand boy had made and pretty soon the crowd breaks and he was following behind the boy's barely visible body in the distance. The robber turns into an alley and moves to hop over a gate. The boy jumps on a few nearby garbage cans and manages to propel himself over the gate as well, but Hoseok knows where these alleys lead. It was all just one big giant maze in these areas, with one alley leading into another one and Hoseok knew that if he tried to go after them like this he would fall way behind. He was fast, but not that fast. The burglar and the boy running after him were both fast as hell. Hoseok wasn't a damn cheetah and he couldn't leap over gates like that, so he loops back around, knowing exactly where the alleys would lead him in order to run head-first into the two giving chase.

 

He ducks to his side, spriting as fast as he could, ducking into another alley before turning left and circling back around. He sees the alleyway entrance coming up. Just beyond there would be an open street. Once the burglar got through there it would be almost impossible for the boy or Hoseok to catch up to him. They needed to stop him before he reached the opening. 

 

It seemed Hoseok wasn't the only one hot on the guy's tail for right when he comes into the clearing, the boy almost had his hand right to the back of the burglar's collar until--

 

Hoseok runs right smack into the both of them, subsequent grunts of pain coming out with screams of shock. He tackles the burglar down and throwing them into a roll. Hoseok twists his body the way he always learned how to take down an opponents. In the end, he ends up on top, the burglar kid with his front facing the hard gravel and his arms locked behind his back where Hoseok had him pinned down. Hoseok's knee was jammed hard into the boy's spinal cord and he jerked once. Hoseok grabbed the ahjumma's purse from his arm and throws it back to where he figured the other boy would be.

 

"Let me go! Let me go!" the burglar screams at him from beneath him.

 

"Shut up," Hoseok mutters with a grunt, "You're just a kid. You should be in school."

 

The boy shudders and gasps, suddenly starting to cry at being caught. Damn it. These pickpocketers were getting younger and younger. Hoseok stands the boy up and yanks him forward, "Don't ever go snatching ahjumma's purses again or I will turn you into the police. Got it?"

 

The boy nods frantically.

 

"Good." He lets go of the boys collar and the boy sprints as fast as he can out of the alleys. Jesus. Kids these days.

 

Turning around to the other boy, Hoseok finds that he was picking himself up off the ground with a pained groan. "Fuck...that hurt like a bitch."

 

Hoseok walks up to the boy and offers him a hand up, "Sorry about that, these alleys are looped together and I figured if I--"

 

The boy ignores Hoseok's outstretched hand and picks himself up, dusting off his pants and his jacket before adjusting the beanie on his head. "Yeah, yeah, whatever. Nice going, hero, you let the guy get away."

 

"He was a kid!" Hoseok exclaims, shocked that this guy in front of him was suddenly getting mad at him.

 

"He was still a robber," the boy says, his face barely concealing disdain and--what was that? Disappointment?

 

The boy turns around, picks up the purse and marches off back towards the food stand. Hoseok scoffs internally, following after him.  "Look, man, I didn't mean to steal your thunder or anything. I was just trying to get the purse back--"

 

"And you did. So good job. Bye." The boy's sarcastic words were biting and if Hoseok was a bit more sensitive, he might've been offended. But Hoseok had a thick skin. They finally make it back to the food stand where the ahjumma was waiting with an anxious face. When she spots them her face lights up.

 

"Oh my goodness, I can't believe this just happened!" she says, her voice loud, hugging the boy who hands her her purse back, "Thank you so much. You didn't have to do that, but you did anyway and--oh goodness, I don't know how I could ever repay you! I--"

 

"It's okay, ahjumma," the tone in the boy's voice changes so fast, it gives Hoseok whiplash. He actually sounded...sweet?! "Just keep serving your delicious ddeokbeokki and I'll be happy."

 

"Aigooo," she coos again. The boy turns to walk away, when Hoseok starts after him.

 

Hoseok grabs onto his shoulder, effectively managing to surprise the boy who turns around. Hoseok hurridly drops his hand, "Uh...I'm sorry about that."

 

The boy looks confused, "Sorry about what?"

 

"For hurting you when I tackled you both like that," Hoseok says, an embarrassed chuckle on his lips. The boy looks him up and down, as if sizing him up to see if he was actually being genuine or if he was being a sarcastic dick.

 

"It's cool," the boy says, waving it off, "As long as ahjumma got her purse back, I don't really care if I got hurt."

 

That wasn't good enough for Hoseok. "Okay, but how about I buy you a meal? To say sorry at least?"

 

"I already told you, it's fine--"

 

"Alcohol's on me?" Hoseok offers. The kid look old enough to drink at least. That seems to get the boy's attention. His eyebrow lifts in interest, before his face twists into something devious.

 

"Haven't you ever heard of stranger danger?" the guy asks, "How do I know you're not gonna kidnap me and rape me or something?"

 

Okay, now Hoseok was genuinely offended. "I am not a--!"

 

The boy laughs, throwing his head back, "That's exactly what a kidnapper would say!"

 

"If I was a kidnapper, wouldn't I have offered you candy or something? Or asked you to help me find my dog or--"

 

"Alright, alright!" The boy snaps, his nose wrinkling in such a way that tells Hoseok that he was actually amused rather than genuinely irritated. "Fine. Let's go eat. But I want meat."

 

"Okay, deal!" Hoseok agrees, "Meat. I can do that. It's a date."

 

"So you were trying to get into my pants!" the boy whips around, pointing at him. 

 

"No! I'm not--" Hoseok splutters, but the hilarity on the boy's face told him that he was joking again.  

 

This punk ass little--

 

********

 

"So," the man asks, putting another slice of meat onto his bowl, "I never got to ask your name."

 

Jungkooks snorts, "Maybe I wasn't trying to give it to you."

 

"You wound me," the man fake cries, pretending to sob into his rice. "I'm Hoseok, by the way, in case you were wondering who your kidnapper was."

 

Jungkook actually laughs at that. "Nice to meet you, kidnapper. Do you have a business card with that? I'm not sure that I believe this is a legitimate practice."

 

"Unfortunately, I don't give my card out to people whose names I don't know," the man named Hoseok tells him, with a greasy little wink, "stranger danger and all that."

 

Jungkook leans back with a chuckle. Okay, he had to give it to the guy. He knew how to hand Jungkook his ass in a box with a pretty pink bow tied on top. 

 

"Jungkook," is all he tells him. Hoseok looks up at him, distracted from his food.

 

"Nice to meet you, Jungkook," Hoseok says before going back to his food. He flips another piece of meat over before picking up another and depositing it in Jungkook's bowl again.

 

"How old are you?" Jungkook finds himself asking. 

 

"25. You?" 

 

"Age is but a number," Jungkook answers suavely. 

 

"Wow," Hoseok says, drama flairing in his voice as he places his chopsticks down on the table, "If I had known you were gonna be such a smart ass I probably wouldn't have offered to buy you food."

 

"Yeah, but you owe me," Jungkook tells him.

 

"More like you owe me, I caught the burglar," Hoseok says.

 

"And you let him go," Jungkook says back. "Therefore, you're a dumbass."

 

"And you're a punk ass little--"

 

"Waiter!" Jungkook calls out, "Can we get the bill!"

 

Hoseok coughs indignantly. "So rude. How can a person like this exist? Speaking casually and everything," he mutters to himself.

 

Jungkook smiles wide. He was not about to tell Hoseok how old he was. He wasn't about to start speaking formally with him. He'd had enough of the whole 'hyung-dongsaeng' bullshit to last him a lifetime. It'd been a while since he actually made a friend. Regardless of age.

 

It was getting pretty late and Jungkook knew he was supposed to be getting back, but he didn't exactly want to leave yet.

 

"Do you have anywhere you need to be?" Hoseok asks him as they walk out of the restaurant.

 

"No. Why? Trying to get into my pants again?" Jungkook teases. It was funny watching Hoseok's face twist from one of surprise to annoyance to grumbly acceptance. He was a really expressive person. Reacting to every thing, not hiding a single emotion on his face. It was refreshing to say the least.

 

"Keep it up, you might give someone the wrong idea," Hoseok says, his voice suddenly taking on a deeper tone, raising an eyebrow at Jungkook. It causes Jungkook to stop in place. Whoa, okay. Yeah, that was freaky.

 

"The only one with ideas here is you," Jungkook says, gulping. If Hoseok notices he doesn't say anything.

 

"You're right," Hoseok says. Holy--what now?

 

"And my idea is that I could really use a drink," Hoseok says, "After chasing after a burglar and then being forced to pay for an ungrateful son of a--"

 

"Get to the point."

 

"As I was saying," Hoseok continues, "After all of that, I promised I would buy you alcohol. You up for hitting a bar?"

 

"Not a club?" Jungkook asks. Didn't all the younger people in this area usually go to clubs to get drinks? Hoseok shrugs it off.

 

"Clubs are too loud and I don't actually feel like dancing right now. Why, did you want to go to a club?" Hoseok asks.

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "Nah, not really."

 

"Cool," Hoseok says, taking ahold of his arm and leading him in the other direction, "then let's go. But I swear to god if you get black out drunk, I am not--"

 

"I won't, sheesh, gimme some credit!"

 

"How can I give credit to a guy who interrupts my every sentence?" Hoseok snarks back, "and besides you still haven't told me how old you are."

 

"That's for me to know and you to maybe never find out," Jungkook says.

 

Hoseok snorts, "I figured, to be honest. You seem like the problematic type."

 

"And you seem like the--"

 

"We're here!" Hoseok leads him into a walk-up bar, taking the stairs and settling inside. The interior was, to put it simply, not what Jungkook was expecting. He didn't know what he was expecting really, maybe some music and a semi-packed bar filled up with drunk college students. What he hadn't expected was actually a rather quiet place, only some low hip hop coming out through the speakers and a few patrons, some couples, a few loners off to the side. Hoseok takes them right up to the bar where a man with grey hair was cleaning the counter.

 

When he looks up, the man gives Hoseok a smile, "Hey, Hobi, who's your new friend?"

 

"I just met him today, actually," Hoseok tells the man, "Yoongi hyung, this is Jungkook. Jungkook, this is Yoongi hyung. We caught a burglar together today."

 

The man named Yoongi raises a disbeliving eyebrow, "Wow, Hobi, wasn't expecting you to use your powers for such a noble cause."

 

Hoseok snorts.

 

"Powers?" Jungkook speaks up.

 

Yoongi quirks a lopsided smile, "Hoseok here's a straight up ninja."

 

Hoseok smacks the man in the arm, "Don't lie to him, Yoongi, jeez. I just have a third degree black belt. No big."

 

Jungkook's jaw drops. "No big? What--so that's how you managed to take that guy down so easily."

 

"It's not anything really," Hoseok tries to deny.

 

"In undergrad, Hoseok once took a guy down three times his size and knocked him out so hard that he--"

 

"Okay, Yoongi, fuck, now you're just purposely trying to scare the guy. Stop already." Hoseok says with a half amused, half serious face.

 

Jungkook laughs, more impressed than intimidated, "Damn. Remind me not to fuck with you then."

 

"You've literally been fucking with me all evening--"

 

"I have not--"

 

"Okay, here's your drinks," Yoongi sets down two beers in front of them, "You can shut up now."

 

And with that, Yoongi walks away to tend to his other patrons and leaves Jungkook and Hoseok to drink their beers.

 

"So..." Jungkook says, "Mr. Ninja, what is it you do?"

 

"Do?"

 

"Yeah, like your job." Jungkook clarifies, "Unless your job is to go around tackling burglars and knocking random pedestrians out."

 

Hoseok fails miserably to stifle a laugh, accidentally snorting into his drink. "I'm actually...in between jobs right now."

 

"Oh."

 

"Yeah." Hoseok says, "What about you? Got a job? Or are you in school?"

 

"I'm...." Jungkook racks his brain, "I'm also between jobs right now."

 

Hoseok seems to accept it well enough. Either Jungkook was a great actor or Hoseok was a gullible doof. 

 

"What do you do for fun then?" Hoseok asks, "Other than flirting with ahjumma's and accusing kind samaritans of kidnapping you."

 

Jungkook lets out a laugh that most definitely was not a giggle.

 

"Hmmm...." Jungkook actually has to think about that, "Well...I like to write. I draw sometimes...I also dabble a bit in the ancient lost art of parkour, perhaps you've heard of it?"

 

Hoseok throws his head back into a loud laugh, a free sound that echoes off the walls and bouces back into Jungkook's ears. Jungkook doesn't even realize it when he ends up smiling along with him. 

 

"You are something else, man." Hoseok ends up telling him. Jungkook tries not to let it go to his head.

 

He fails.

 

"Indeed. I am the shit," he says.

 

"Yeah," Hoseok agrees, "you are a piece of shit."

 

"Such shade," Jungkook winces, "Tough talk coming from you."

 

"Even though you won't tell me your age, I'm still like 87% sure I'm older than you," Hoseok says.

 

"You will never ever win the lottery," Jungkook tells him. Quite a shame.

 

"Fuck," Hoseok curses, "There goes my dream of owning a yacht. Guess I'm gonna have to go back to my day job as a daytime hooker."

 

Jungkook laughs again, enjoying hanging out with this guy he met earlier today. It startles him slightly when his phone beeps in his pocket. He takes it out, sparing a single glance at the time before opening the text message.

 

From: Jimin

Jeon Jungkook, you get your ass back home right this minute or you can expect your Dad to send the cavarly out to drag you back home by your hair.

 

"Shit," Jungkook mutters. He stands up quickly. Hoseok's eyes turn towards him.

 

"What's wrong?"

 

"Uh, sorry, but I gotta get back home. Like now," Jungkook tells him, pocketing his phone and taking one last large gulp of his beer. He was gonna need the alcohol to numb the pain of having his head chopped off later. "Thanks for dinner and the drinks, I--"

 

"Hey, Jungkook, are you okay?" Hoseok stands up, looking at him with concern.

 

"Y-Yeah, I just--" Jungkook quickly bends over the bar, snatching up a pen. He grabs Hoseok's arm and scribbles his number on there, "Here's my number. We'll hang out again soon, okay? Yeah! Bye!"

 

"Wait--"

 

Jungkook zooms out of the bar as fast as he could, rushing until he reaches the main street. He hops in a cab and hightails it out of there. His dad was not gonna be happy that he ditched his guard and snuck out. 

 

Maybe if he was lucky, the guard would get fired.

 

 

Chapter Text

Hoseok walks in the front door of his apartment, clutching the late rent notice in his hand tighter. He had only one week left to pay the bill or he was going to get kicked out of his apartment. He really didn't have anywhere else to go and he needed this place. It was the cheapest he could find and even still he couldn't pay the bill. He should've known that maybe going to the military academy wasn't that great of an idea.

 

But it was the only thing he could do at this point. He had transferred universities already by the time he realized it would cause him to have to leave his on-campus housing and find somewhere closer.

 

He had just graduated last spring, but not without working two extra jobs on the side along with training. It took him three years to finish all of his training and get his credientials in addition to finishing his military service in between but in the end he had gotten it done. But now without the school to help him with finacial aid, he was on his own to pay for everything. His part time jobs weren't enough. He was going to need more in order to pay for rent and eat and afford all of his other necessities. 

 

It was a good thing that the application period for the secret service at the Blue House had finally opened up for this year. The blue house was very exclusive, only accepting applicants that graduated from the military academy and even then, they had to have a lot of recommendations from professors and drill sergents alike. They were looking for qualified individuals with experience in the fields of protection. If he were to get this job, he would become part of the secret service for the President of their country.

 

Not like a personal bodyguard or anything, though. Most likely, he would be working with the lower entry officers, the ones who worked outside security and provided backup in the unlikely chance that something happened. If anything he might work as part of the patrol security that worked inside the Blue House but even that was uncertain. All that was certain in that moment was that he needed to excell in the interviews and land himself this job. The pay was decent and would allow him to drop one of his part time jobs; maybe even both. It would help a lot with covering rent and he would also gain a lot of job experience.

 

All in all, Hoseok was as determined as ever to get this job. He wouldn't take no for an answer. Or maybe he'd just tack on a please.

 

The interview was in two days and Hoseok was nervous. 

 

He had been going to the gym, making sure he was ready for the physical tests as well as the mental and the psychological examinations. He'd had to have background checks done on him and when they all came back clear Hoseok was pretty sure he'd be okay. But he was still a nervous wreck.

 

Like he had told that boy he met the other day, he was a good samaritan. Or at least maybe an average one. He'd never done anything illegal in his life (not that he didn't know how to have fun because psshhhhh he most certainly did know how to have fun) and he knew that his record would be squeaky clean.

 

Speaking of Jungkook...Hoseok smacked himself in the face. He couldn't believe how the boy had come and gone like a leaf in a breeze almost as soon as they had met. Hoseok liked the guy, he was fun and witty and although Hoseok deemed him one of those people who end up being more irritating than easy going, Hoseok still felt like maybe he had just made a new friend. Or at least one that had the potential to become a pretty good friend. Even Yoongi had told him that he liked the guy and that he seemed like 'a good kid'. Yoongi liked to call everyone a kid, because he was an actual literal grandpa. 

 

Hoseok hadn't expected the boy to make a mad dash out of the bar so quickly. He wasn't expecting Jungkook to hastily scribble his number on his arm either (which kind of hurt by the way) and then run off like a squirrel being chased by a lawnmower. The number was barely legible to begin with and then to top it off, Hoseok realized that he lost his phone. He looked all over the place for it, even going back to the restaurant and checking, but it wasn't there.

 

So to put it kindly, Hoseok's phone and gotten lost in the abyss and that was another thing he couldn't afford to replace. And yet another reason why he desperately needed this job. By the time he realized that his phone was really gone for good, he had looked back to the number on his arm and found that he had completely sweated the ink off.

 

"Shit," Hoseok had cursed. Hoseok didn't know why the fact that he had lost Jungkook's number made him feel more upset than losing his phone. His phone; the machine with his actual entire life on it. 

 

Hoseok had gone home that night and fell asleep with the resign that if he ever got the chance to meet Jungkook again, then it must certainly be fate. It was unlikely seeing how large a city Seoul was and the chances of running into a stranger againg who you met only once were extremely low. Hoseok sighed. Maybe he and Jungkook's paths weren't meant to converge in this life. It was a bit bitter to think about seeing as Hoseok genuinely liked the guy.

 

Hoseok shook his head. He needed to stop with the existential thoughts. He hated how he always descended into thoughts like these right before he was about to go to sleep. It made it falling asleep almost impossible and if he did manage to do so then it was extremely hard for him to sleep peacefully through the night.

 

He wondered if he would ever meet Jungkook again. He really hoped so.

 

And if he did, he hoped that Jungkook didn't hate him for losing their only connection to each other.

 

 

*******

 

The interview process took a total of three days. The first day was all physical tests to see if he was up to the pyshical strain that this job could include. He had been outside at a large outdoor gym and track with about eleven other men and five women. They had been partnered up and set to fight each other to test their defensive and offensive skills.

 

"Hi, I'm Hoseok," he introduced himself to the woman in front of him who was to be his test partner for the day. "Nice to meet you."

 

She smiled politely at him, "I'm Hwasa. Nice to meet you too, Hoseok."

 

"You ready for three days of torture?" Hoseok asks, half joking, half serious.

 

She laughs goodnaturedly, "As ready as I'll ever be."

 

Hoseok nods, "Same."

 

Together, they end up fighting against each other. Hwasa's skills were scarily impressive but Hoseok thinks he held himself up pretty well. In the end, the objective was just to disarm the opponent, which each of them did just fine. Watching the others, Hoseok could see a few struggling. One woman was paried up alongside a really large man, but she seemed to be doing a right fine job of holding her own. Most of the other people had been paired up man with man and woman with woman but other than Hwasa and Hoseok, the other pair was the only one who was a mixed pairing. It only made sense. In this job, they had no idea who they would be up against, it would just so happen that they might come across someone a opponent who was larger than themselves or stronger and they would need to be able to handle themselves.

 

After the partner exercises, they end up having to test how fast they run by sprinting along the track. They had kick boxing tests, strength and endurance tests, as well as as a section that tested their ability to give first aid at a moments notice. And then finally, they end for the day. Everyone seemed to be completely exhausted and Hoseok was sure that a few people might not actually show back up for the regular interview the next day. 

 

He passed out the second he walked through his door, and if it weren't for his automatic alarm he probably would've slept through the entire next day. But still, he made it on time and was ready for this interview.

 

This where he met the three men who would be interviewing everybody. There were about six applicants for the early morning interview session that Hoseok was a part of. It included Hwasa and the other woman, who Hoseok now knew as Byulyi and her other partner who still looked massive beside her, Junhong was his name. 

 

The interviewers introduced themselves as Choi Ikje, assistant director of the Secret Service. Next was Jung Hunchul, head of the Secret Service Intelligence Headquarters and lastly was Kim Namjoon, director of the Secret Service and their head supervisor. 

 

The man named Namjoon spoke, "You might not have known this but I was present for a short time yesterday and I was able to discern some of you when it cames to your skills. All of which are very impressive. We only dismissed four people yesterday and the rest of you have proceeded to this interview. Today is probably the easiest day when it comes to interviews. Yesterday was probably the hardest. Today we are basically just going to be asking the standard interview questions but also looking to see which of you are deemed fit to become a part of this team. We have an extremely important job, one that is not meant to be taken lightly. We are looking for more than just a person who can roundhouse kick someone in the face, we are looking for those of you who are tenacious enough to step in front of a bullet, or let yourself get hit by a car if it meant protecting the President or any member of the First Family and his cabinet. If any of you are not willing to do this, then you may leave right now."

 

No one moves.

 

"Good." Namjoon continues, "Then lets begin."

 

The interview process was honestly the most stressful thing Hoseok had ever gone through in his life. He was asked questions about everything under the sun, from his intentions of wanting to work for them, down to his familial status, seeing as those who worked here often had to commit a large amount of their time to the job and didn't have much time for spouses or children. Luckily, Hoseok was a single pringle.

 

Not that he didn't want a family eventually...but that was kind of a hard dream to achieve considering.

 

The interview went on for several hours with Kim Namjoon asking most of the questions but the other two asking their fair share of questions too. Once the group interview was done, their group was done for the day. For the afternoon, the other group of six was to be interviewed. For the rest of the afternoon, they were free to leave if they wished. They would be doing individual interviews the next day and once that was done, they would be put through psychological and mental tests in order to determine that they weren't actually psychopaths who would try to use their position to try to assassinate someone.

 

The next day wasn't any less stressful than any of the previous two. They had eliminated two people from each group. From Hoseok's group it was the other two men from his group whom he hadn't caught the names of and from the other group it was one woman and another man. That left them with eight possible contendors. Hoseok was just happy that he hadn't been weeded out yet. Hopefully that meant he had a good chance of actually getting the job.

 

Hoseok's individual interview was scheduled for late afternoon, which meant that in the morning he had to go in for the psychological evaluation. He was honestly a bit nervous for that one. But it turned out, it wasn't that bad. They asked a lot of personal questions and asked him a lot about hypothetical scenarios like if there was a bomb threat versus an actual bomb. Or if the any of the First Family was kidnapped. Then there were the questions that were a bit harder. Such as what would happen if he was the one who was taken and was tortured for government secrets. He was asked to imagine vivid scenarios of torture and how he would handle them and he didn't know if his answers were satisfactory or not.

 

Honestly, it freaked Hoseok out just thinking about it.

 

The doctor just wrote things down on his clipboard with a passive face. Hoseok really wanted to know what he was writing. Maybe it was something like, "Crybaby. Scared of literally everything. Extra scared of spiders and heights."

 

 

After a few more weird scenarios and more diving into his personal life, does the doctor tell him he's free to go. He wants to ask if he's been marked crazy or not, because he would rather know sooner than later, but gets ushered out.

 

He ends up eating lunch with Hwasa, Junhong and Moonbyul. Junhong had his own psychological test done that morning and Hwasa and Moongyul were up for the afternoon, having had their interviews scheduled earlier that morning. He had asked them what the interview was like and they just said "interesting". Like, what the hell was that supposed to mean?

 

It didn't matter in the end because soon enough, it was time for Hoseok's turn to go into the interview. He didn't know what he was expecting, but he for sure wasn't expecting this.

 

It was just Kim Namjoon and a clipboard.

 

"Hello," he says, "Sit down."

 

Hoseok does so, trying his best not to flub something up.

 

"So, Jung Hoseok," he reads the name from his clipboard before looking back up into Hoseok's eyes. His face was sharp, powerful looking and yet his eyes looked rather gentle. His tone spoke of all seriousness and because of that Hoseok knew that the man took this job and this interview process seriously. It made Hoseok start to sweat, just a little.

"Tell me about yourself," Namjoon says, gesturing towards him.

 

"Well, I graduated from--"

 

"No, no, no," Namjoon stops him, "I know what you've all probably been told to say in an interview. It's usually just about credentials and why you want to have this job, but all of that stuff we already know. What I want to know is, who are you? Are you a trustworthy person? Do you have a temper? Are you adaptable and observational? That's what I want to know."

 

"Uh, I don't know how to answer those questions?" Hoseok says, not sure what to say without coming off as arrogant.

 

"Hmmm," Namjoon says as he writes something down on his clipboard. Shit. Hoseok was already failing his interview. "Do you mind if I ask you a few...unconventional questions?"

 

Hoseok's mind immediately starts to go into overdrive, wondering what kind of strange and terrifying questions Namjoon could ask him. If he was dying on the inside, it most certainly didn't show on the outside, because Hoseok just answers, "Of course. Sure."

 

Namjoon hums with approval before adjusting his legs, one over the other. He brings his elbow up to rest under his chin and places his clipboard back on the table behind him.

 

"Hobbies?" Namjoon suddenly asks.

 

"What?"

 

"Do you have any hobbies? What do you do in your spare time?" Namjoon asks again.

 

What was this, a date?

 

"Uh...I like to dance," Hoseok answers honestly after a moment, "I'm a big fan of hip hop music and I also dabble a little bit in rap. I'm nothing special though. Um..." Hoseok didn't know what else to say.

 

"Do you have any nicknames?"

 

"My friends call me Hobi," he says, "It's a play on the English word 'Hope'."

 

"Would you describe your apartment as clean?"

 

"Uh...yes?" Hoseok answers, "I do the dishes and dust?"

 

"Sugar or salt?"

 

"Sugar."

 

"Summer or Winter?"

 

"Spring." 

 

Namjoon raises an eyebrow. "Drama or Comedy?"

 

"Comedy."

 

"Pen or Pencil?"

 

"Pen."

 

"Coffee or Tea?"

 

"Neither."

 

"Books or movies?"

 

"Books."  Namjoon looks impressed by that answer, but he continues on steadily.

 

"Morning or Night?"

 

"Morning."

 

"Scream or Cry?"

 

"Scream."

 

"Right or Left?"

 

"Left."

 

"Okay, I think we are done for today," Namjoon says, "Thank you for you time. We will let you know in a few days whether or not you've been selected for a position."

 

"Wait, that's it?" Hoseok asks, his mouth having fallen open. Namjoon nods. "That's it. Unless you have any questions for me?"

 

"Other than what was up with the lightening round speed quiz?" Hoseok jokes. Namjoon lets out a light chuckle, obviously amused. At least Hoseok didn't fuck up by attempting to use humor with him.

 

Hoseok stands up slowly, still dazed, before bowing. "Uh...thank you?"

 

"Thank you," Namjoon says, turning around to gather his clipboard, writing something down on the paper, "We'll be in touch within the week."

 

Hoseok walks out of the interview with his neck twisted and the worst pain in his head. As soon as he gets home, he falls face first on his bed. He was 87% sure he just failed his interview.

 

 

*******

 

When Hoseok wakes up the next morning, the first thing he does is check his email. Nothing yet. Damn it. He had made sure to tell Kim Namjoon and the other interviewers that he currently didn't have a phone number and to contact him by email but he should've known that they wouldn't get back to him so fast. 

 

He ends up waiting two days. During those days, he works at his part time job, waiting tables. Every night he checks his bank accout and sees the numbers steadily dwindling. There was no way he would have enough to pay the rent this month if he bought a phone. It was shelter or a hunk of metal. Hoseok knew exactly what won out. 

 

When he gets home the next day, the first thing he does is check his email.

 

12 new messages!

 

Hoseok scrolls through deleting the spam, then he stops.

 

To: Jung Hoseok

From: Kim Namjoon

Subject:  Congratulations

Dear Mr. Jung Hoseok,

We are pleased to offer you a position as an entry level officer of security within the Blue House. Should you accept, we would require you to come in tomorrow for orientation which will include getting your security cleared and assigning you to your post. Please let us know whether you will accept or decline the position as soon as possible. Thank you very much for your time and interest in our position. 

Sincerely,

Kim Namjoon. Executive Director, Secret Service.

 

Hoseok stares at the email with wide eyes.

 

And then he screams. He jumps out of his chair and runs around his apartment, screeching at the top of his lungs, yelling "I DID IT!!!!!" so loudly that he was pretty sure every neighbor in the building could hear him. He runs into his room and launches himself onto his bed.

 

"I DID IT!!!!" he screeches with joy as he roles around on the bed, bunching up the covers around him until he accidentally rolls right off the bed, landing with a pained oof!

 

But he pops back up again like the strapping young bean he was and proceeds to run back into the living room, only to flip himself backwards onto the couch, rolling so that his head was on the bottom of the cushion with his ass in the air. He waggles his legs around, kicking and flailing.

 

"I DID IT BITCHESSS!!!!!!"

 

Then he remembers, he was supposed to email them back asap.

 

He was yelling the whole time whilst typing out his reply.

 

To: Kim Namjoon

From: Jung Hoseok

Subject: Re: Congratulations 

Dear Kim Namjoon,

I very graciously accept the offer. You can expect me bright and early tomorrow morning.

Thank you very much the opportunity!

Sincerely,

Jung Hoseok

 

*******

 

Orientation was pretty normal considering. Turns out Hwasa, Byulyi and Junghong both got the job as well. From the other group, only two men were selected, a man from Hong Kong named Jackson and another man named Chanyeol. The six of them reported to the orientation and together they ended up getting briefed about the rules of the Blue House and the rules with interacting with the subjects of whom they were in charge of protecting. 

 

It was all pretty standard, expect for the fact that most of them would be assigned to regular security duty and after a certain amount of time has passed, some of them might be considered for promotions to positions protecting certain individuals. 

 

They got their pictures taken for their security badges and they were given a tour of the Blue House as well as the immediate interior of the Executive Residence, where the President and his family lived. They left soon enough. 

 

After being fully oriented, they were told that they were free to roam around the security building for the rest of the day, get acquainted with the other members of the secret service and next week would be the start of their actual work. 

 

The group disperses and Hoseok was about to walk off when he is stopped.

 

"Hoseok," their supervisor, Namjoon, calls out to him.

 

Hoseok's head snaps in his direction. "Yes, sir?"

 

"Come here a moment," he beckons him over. Hoseok was quick to jog over. 

 

"Everything okay?" he asks worridly. Why did Namjoon want to talk to him already? It was only orientation, he hadn't even had a chance to fuck up yet! Was he going to get fired already? No, no, he hadn't done anything wrong! Why was he so nervous, if he knew that he didn't do anything wrong? He was gonna end up incriminating himself, if only he could stop this downward spiral of thoughts--

 

Namjoon nods, "Oh, yes, yes. Everything's fine. I actually wanted to talk to you about something."

 

"Oh." Hoseok says, mind still roaring with the words 'You're firrrrrreeeeeeddddd", "Okay. What is it?"

 

"I have a job opening, if you think you're up for it," Namjoon says, crossing his arms and looking towards him expectantly.

 

Hoseok was pretty sure Namjoon just punched him in the stomach, "Whu--what? A job? What--"

 

"We've been on the lookout for a new bodyguard for the President's son for about a week now," Namjoon says.

 

"What happened to the old one?" Hoseok asks.

 

"Rage quit, you know how it is," Namjoon says. No. Hoseok most certainly does not know how it is. "Anyway, with every new wave of guards we get in, we try to weed out the few we think could handle being personal bodyguards."

 

"And you think I could do that?" Hoseok asks, still not sure why Namjoon was talking to him about this. What exactly was he offering?

 

Namjoon nods, pursing his lips, "Well, from what I've seen you are more than qualified and the president's son personally picked you out of all the applicant's--"

 

"Wait, what?!" Hoseok squeaks, pretty damn sure his ears were decieving him and he had heard wrong, "He picked me? Personally? What?"

 

Namjoon chuckles, eyes crinkling like this was something funny, "Yeah, I don't know how that happened. But from what I heard, he was pretty adament it be you we give the position to."

 

Hoseok's head was spinning. The President's son did what now? He wanted who now? The presiden'ts son had hand picked him? Him? To be his personal bodygaurd. This was completely unreal. He was dreaming. That had to be it. Any moment now Namjoon's face was gonna turn into a snake and he would lunge at Hoseok's face and Hoseok would piss his pants and then wake up screaming, hoping to God he didn't acctually just piss his pants and then thank Jesus that he had managed to spare his sheets.

 

"I mean, hey," Namjoon says, "It's a better job. More hands on, better pay, higher seniority. He's the President's second son. Most people don't know about him, but those of us in security are allowed to know. However, if you breach this information then of course, you will be immediately fired and sent to federal prison."

 

Hoseok gulps at the mention of being fired. And--wait, hold the phone. Federal Prison? Just for telling someone this secret about a second son? He hadn't known that the President even had a second son. He only knew about the President's first son, the one whom Hoseok had assumed to be his only son. Hoseok guessed that if you worked for security, you got to learn a lot more secrets than the regular public, but he hadn't expected a bombshell to be dropped on him on pretty much his first day of work.

 

"Of course, sir. I would never disclose that information," Hoseok says seriously. He mentally praises his knees for not giving out on him.

 

Namjoon looks at him with an amused smile, "I know, Jung. Your interview was really impressive. I think this position will be a good fit for you. You have to deal with Jungkook but--"

 

If Hoseok's neck could snap off like a twing on a branch just from turning his head would have been rolling in that moment.

 

"Did you just say, 'Jungkook'?" Hoseok asks, trying his damndest not to let the volume of his voice get to loud. He knew he had trouble controlling himself when it came to volume. 

 

"Yeah, Jeon Jungkook." Namjoon answers, "That's the name of the President's youngest son. The one they try really hard to keep out of the media. He's a bit of a brat, but he's ultimately a good kid." 

 

A brat. A kid. Okay...Okay...maybe it was a little boy? Like a middle schooler or something? Yeah...there was no way that it was the Jungkook he met the other day. Yeah! Besides there were plenty of people in Korea named Jungkook. It was a pretty common name! He just hadn't realized the youngest son of the President (he still couldn't believe the President actually had a second son that he managed to hide from the world) had that name. Not to mention that the Jungkook he had met the other day didn't have the same last name as President Jeon. Hoseok racks his mind for the last name of the Jungkook he had met.

 

"Oh, he wants to meet with you right now," Namjoon says suddenly, "that's why I called you over. Otherwise I would've waited till next Monday. He wanted you to come to the library to speak to you personally about the position."

 

Hoseok was having too many heart attacks today. People needed to stop dropping shit on him like this.

 

"Now?"

 

"Yes, now." Namjoon says.

 

Hoseok stops, his mind halting, "Like...right now, right now?"

 

Namjoon gives an exhale halfway between an amused laugh and an irritated huff, "Yes, right now. If you'll follow me, I can take you to him. After your meeting, if he still insists on you and you're up for it, we can proceed with the promotion."

 

Promotion. Dear lord. Hoseok got a promotion. On his first fucking day. What the actual fuck?

 

He follows Namjoon as he leads him down the hall. They eventually come upon a set of large doors. There are two bodyguards standing in front of the doors. When they see Namjoon approach, they bow.

 

"Jimin, Taehyung," Namjoon bows back to them, "Is he waiting?"

 

The one named Taehyung nods, "He said to send him in as soon as you got here."

 

"Very well." They start to walk in.

 

Jimin puts his hand out, "Actually...he insisted that just Hoseok come inside."

 

Namjoon looks surprised. He gives Hoseok a look but he just shrugs back. Namjoon says something under his breath that Hoseok doesn't quite catch but he sends Hoseok in anyway. "Just have one of them page me when you finish."

 

Hoseok nods. Hoseok looks to Jimin, hoping that the man would see how utterfly confused he was about the whole situation and would help him out. But Jimin just shrugs his shoulders and just motions to the door. He was still a little miffed that Jimin hadn't told him about the President's second son. He had been friends with Jimin for some years now; he was the one who told Hoseok about the job opportunities at the Blue House. But his friend had neglected to tell Hoseok about any of this. Hoseok brushed it off, figuring it was because they were under legally binding contract not to reveal that information. Even still, he was gonna give Jimin a peice of his mind later.

 

They escort him inside and then close the doors behind him. Hoseok finds himself sweating. He takes several steps forward, walking until he reaches a seating area, obscured by rows and rows of bookshelves. There was a single large window facing out, overlooking the large garden of the Blue House. Hoseok walks towards it, looking around for anyone who could be this mysterious "second president's son" who also happened to be named Jungkook. He stops in front of the window, looking out. It was exquistely designed, a large fountain surrounded by immaculate flowers all around. There were bushes and trees and so many flowers all over the place.

 

"Hey," a familiar voice calls out from behind him, "Enjoying the view?"

 

Hoseok's heart stops. He whips around, probably faster than a tornado. He probably even caused enough wind to knock a few books from the shelves.

 

"Fuck," Hoseok groans, hands immediately coming up to rub down his face, "I was so hoping it wasn't you."

 

Jungkook, the annoying boy from the other day, the one with an attitude and a sharp tongue and an oddly flirty disposition. Jeon Jungkook. The son of their President.

 

Jungkook smirks, "What, you were hoping that the president's son was a different Jungkook?" Hoseok ignores the slight look of hurt on Jungkook's face, now wasn't the time to be dwadling on that.

 

"How come you didn't tell me who you were? I had no idea the President even had a second son. You're Jungkook? Jeon Jungkook?" Hoseok demands, "Did you know that I was an applicant here before when we met?"

 

Jungkook lets out a disbeliving huff. Hoseok takes a moment to look at Jungkook, up and down. The boy wasn't wearing the same street clothes he had worn when they first met a week ago. He had had on skinny jeans that day and a solid white t-shirt. His hair had been down, loose and under a red beanie with a green military style jacket over his shoulders. His ears had been pierced and his gaze had been unwavering.

 

Now, he looked entirely different. He wasn't dressed in a suit, but he was dressed a lot nicer than he had been. He had on loose slacks and a button down. His hair was styled and long gone was the beanie and the earrings. But the unwavering gaze was still there. Staring at Hoseok, like he was waiting for him to make a move. A pawn on a chessboard and Jungkook was the Queen. He had all the moves and all the knowledge on his side. Hoseok was just a rook, getting ready to be slaughtered.

 

"I had no idea who you were when I met you," Jungkook tells him, moving so that he was now sitting on one of the couches. He motions for Hoseok to follow suit and he relecutantly does, "I just figured you were like any random dufus on the street. I didn't tell you who I was because it's not like I can go around telling everybody I'm the president's second son who most of the nation isn't aware that he has. I gave you my number, by the way, did you lose it or something? You never messaged me or anything."

 

Hoseok looks down in embarrassment, "I...accidentally....sweated it off. I don't have a phone at the moment anyways, so..."

 

When he looks back up, he expects Jungkook to look irritated, maybe show off a bit of that arrogance that a president's son was bound to have. Instead, he's met with an entertained quirk of the lips and light eyes, "I figured it was something like that. I knew you couldn't resist me on purpose."

 

Hoseok rolls his eyes. There's the Jungkook he had come to know. The sassy little shit nugget who liked to fake flirt with him every chance he got. 

 

"Why am I here, Jungkook?" Hoseok asks seriously after a moment, "If you didn't know I was a secret service applicant, why did I get told that I was being promoted to be your personal bodyguard? What happened to your last bodyguard?"

 

Jungkook cracks another smile, this one a bit more devious than the last one, "I didn't do anything to the last guard, if that's what you're wondering. They just got fed up with me and quit."

 

Hoseok gives him a look. The look that says quit fucking with me before I knock your teeth out. Jungkook relents, "Okay, okay, I kept running off because the morons were blindy following my father's rules and refused to let me out of the house. I kept sneaking out and running from them and causing them to get into trouble so they quit."

 

Why does it seem like there was more to it than that?

 

"I also...maybe...might've purposely gotten them fired."

 

"Wow, you are a serious jackass, aren't you?" Hoseok couldn't help but call out, not even caring anymore to try to keep up his formal speech. He slipped easily back into the familiar speech patterns and dropped any honorifics he might've considered using with Jungkook after having come to find out his true status.

 

"See!" Jungkook sits up straighter, "That's why! When I saw that you were an applicant, I knew you would be perfect for the job. You know me as, Jungkook, a person and not, Jeon Jungkook, the president's son. You won't treat me like a porcelain doll that needs to be sheltered and to top it off you won't treat me like a kid! Even knowing that I was younger than you, you just talked to me normally and like I was an equal. That's exactly why I couldn't stand the other guards I had. They were constantly trying to belittle me, like I was a damsel in distress who couldn't kill a spider or reach the top shelf of a cupboard. I'm an adult and although I might not act like it all the time, I don't appreciate condescencion."

 

Hoseok had noticed this about the man in front of him. From the very first moment they had met, Jungkook had been nothing but straightforward with Hoseok, at least in the simple sense. He hadn't told Hoseok his age because he didn't want Hoseok talking down to him unless he could too. Hoseok had known, deep in his mind, that Jungkook was younger than him and yet he found he didn't give a shit that he was speaking informal speech with him. It didn't really matter, because Hoseok knew that the way Jungkook carried himself was not that of someone not deserving of respect. It made sense to Hoseok really, how Jungkook might've had a complex about this. But at the same time, Hoseok was pretty sure that this whole thing was unfair.

 

"But...isn't this cheating?" Hoseok asks, "You're giving me this job because you know me. Not because I earned it--"

 

"Are you saying you don't think you're qualified?" Jungkook balks.

 

"What? No, that's not--"

 

"Are you saying you don't want the job?"

 

"No, that's not it either. It's just--"

 

"Then what's the problem?" Jungkook asks, standing up again, Hoseok following suit, "I've seen what you can do first hand. I know all your qualifications and you've been approved by all your supervisiors. I didn't pick you until you had already been selected by the executives to get the job. Besides, it's not like I'm a huge target or in any amount of danger. The job will literally just be accompaning me to all the stupid functions and public events. You just have to make sure no one recognizes me and that's it! A walk in the park! And a pay raise. So, what do you say?"

 

Hoseok fidgits uncomfortably, "I don't know..."

 

"Oh come on!" Jungkook whines, "I promise I'll go easy on you. I won't go anywhere without your permission and I won't purposely get you fired. Please?"

 

Hoseok was actually torn. He didn't know what to do. On one hand, he needed this job and the money would be perfect. He needed to pay off the rent on his appartment. And besides, how bad could it be to work with Jungkook? Okay, yeah, he was a bit of a brat just like Namjoon said, but he was also not a bad person. He might even be someone who Hoseok could see himself becoming friends with. That was exactly the path they had been on before he had even found out who Jungkook was. So now, what was stopping them from continuing that path? He could be Jungkook's bodyguard right?

 

Hoseok let's out a defeated sigh, "Do you swear to not be annoying?"

 

Jungkook's face lights up and his mouth errupts into one of the largest smiles Hoseok had ever seen in his entire life, rivaling his own, and Hoseok was the undisputed champ.

 

"I swear," Jungkook tells him, resolve steadfast yet brimming over the edge with excitement, "You won't regret this."

 

Too late, Hoseok thinks.

Chapter Text

When Hoseok comes in the next morning, he was whisked off from the main section of the building where the majority of security detail worked and gets lead to another separate room with Namjoon and the assistant director, Ikje. Turns out being a personal bodyguard was a lot diferrent than being a part of regular security.  He was in charge of protecting a single person now and with that came a lot more responsibilty. For entry level security, they were only responsible for knowing basic level protection skills, martial arts or any other form of defensive mechanisms. 

 

Now that he was going to be a personal guard, he was to be put through a mandatory training course where he was to be taught exactly what to do should an unexpectedly dangerous situation arise. Hoseok thought the mandtory physical tests for basic entry was hard, but this course required much more. Most of it was a review of a lot of stuff he already knew, but as the week went on with his training, he learned that there was a lot more to it than just being able to fight back, just like Namjoon had said in the interview.

 

His training courses were to last a week, and then he would get to be fully assimilated into his job. He had meetings with every head of the security department, from intelligence, to foreign respondents (Hoseok didn't understand why exactly, but he went with it). He was trained to heighten his reaction time, forced to undergo simulations that tested his ability to pick out potential threats in a crowd and how fast he reacted to them. He was thrown through test runs of what he would do in the case that something dangerous happened. He was put through simulations of war attacks, sniper attacks, poision attacks, and every other form of attack in the book.

 

He was also taught how to "handle" the protectees. Meaning, how to stay out of their way. It felt kind of strange hearing them talk about Jungkook like he was someone who would not want to talk to him at all and instead want him to keep his professional distance. Was that what Jungkook? For Hoseok to act like his guard and nothing else? 

 

Throughout the entire week, Hoseok had only seen Jungkook once and that had been on accident. He was accompanied by Jimin and the other guard he had seen outside the library. Jimin, his friend, and his co-worker, Kim Taehyung. They were apparently a part of the team that specialized specifically in the protection of the First Family. The team consited of twelve people who were assigned to manage the security and safety of the first family wherever they went. 

 

And then of course, there were each of the member's personal security guards. The First Lady had two of her own personal bodyguards wheras the President had about six guards who traveled with him officially. Jungkook's older brother, Junghyun, whom Hoseok had thought was the only son of the household also had two guards. All of which never spoke a word to their protectees.

 

Jungkook, however, had been flanked by Taehyung and Jimin, who told Hoseok that they were only temporary guards for him until Hoseok finished his training course. Usually, they worked as part of the security of the entire unit, rather than individuals. Apparently, Jungkook went through bodyguards rather often. After an extended amount of time with him, they would either ask to be demoted back to entry level office or quit, or as Jungkook had so eloquently told him, he got them fired. 

 

Hoseok had asked why neither Jimin nor Taehyung were his bodyguards and they had told him that they hadn't been allowed to because they weren't at the age requirement yet. They were both 24 years old and the age minimum to be a personal bodyguard was 25. For every other security position, the minimum was 18. Hoseok had lucked out for sure in that department. 

 

When Hoseok had seen Jungkook followed closely by the likes of Jimin and Taehyung, he didn't know whether to make his presence known or not. Didn't matter in the end, because Jungkook had noticed him first. A smile bloomed on his youthul face as he made his way over to Hoseok. 

 

"Hey, Hoseok!" Jungkook said happily, "How goes the training? I heard it's brutal."

 

Hoseok's first instinct was to hide how tired he was from the younger; keep that professional distance. But in the end, he remembered that even though this was Jeon Jungkook, the President's son and the one he was going to be in charge of protecting with his life, he was also just Jungkook. Jungkook, the kid who hated being called a kid and was really just a bratty man--a man brat--and instead liked to treat others with equal respect to himself. This apparently extended past just others viewing him as an equal. Respect wasn't just a one way street for Jungkook.

 

As much as he demanded it for himself, he also dished it out. Even though he was the President's son, the one who could command anything and everything from someone as low ranking as security as long as it didn't violate their job and the law, he was extremely polite and respectful. When Hoseok had left their meeting in the library and gone back to Namjoon with Jungkook in tow (the boy decided he would go with him personally to the Director's office and announce their agreement), Jungkook had spoken with nothing but absolute respect and almost admiration in his tone. Namjoon was a kind man, something Hoseok hadn't really expected from the head of the security of the Secret Service of the Blue House, but he was. 

 

Namjoon regarded Jungkook with politness and respect as well, however, the both of them did maintain that professional distance. Jungkook didn't talk down to him like he probably could. Jungkook didn't talk to Namjoon like an equal either, like he did with Hoseok, because although their positions left their relationship ambiguous, they most certainly weren't close enough to be considered friends. 

 

And now, seeing Jungkook interact with not only him, but two other guards at the same time, Hoseok was beginning to pick up a pattern. If you respected him and showed him the same level of seriousness and deceny as someone whom you truly cared about, then he would show you the same. 

 

Seeing as Jimin and Taehyung were rather close to his age, Jungkook spoke to them without any formalities and in turn, they spoke to him the same way. It was almost sureal, especially within their culture, but it was also oddly refreshing.

 

So, Hoseok swallowed his initial reaction to throw up his highest wall and strike up the formalities, and answered honestly, "It's been brutal. I'm not sure if it was worth it just so I could kill myself over having to protect your annoying ass."

 

Jungkook seemed pleased with his answer, and in turn, Hoseok was already beginning to feel better about taking this position. "This annoying ass is priceless, therefore, I hope they put you through even more hell."

 

"You're too sweet on me, Jungkook, really," Hoseok deadpanned, "I'm swooning."

 

Jimin and Taehyung laughed along with the rest of them, as they joined the conversation. They talked about how their training went and Jimin teased Jungkook about how he had once said he wanted to be a part of the Secret Service so he could hack into their top secret technology and make an Iron Man suit of his own.

 

Jungkook got flustered and punched Jimin in the arm, but if the shorter noticed, he didn't let on. Hoseok found it hilarious and so did Taehyung who was quick to inform them that, the Secret Service, unfortunately, did not have the technology to make an Iron Man suit.

 

"I know, because Kookie forced me to check," Taehyung told them. 

 

"Ahh, Tae, don't call me Kookie," Jungkook snapped, but without the hostility. Hoseok was a bit surprised at the term of endearment too. He expected them to be close but not that close.

 

"Ah, right right," Taehyung played off, "Kookie hates it when anyone calls him one of his childhood nicknames."

 

"What nicknames?" Hoseok asked, ready to receive his blackmail material.

 

"He was called--"

 

"Don't you dare, Jimin," Jungkook threatened.

 

"They called him Baby Bun, a lot," Jimin laughed, "Because he looked like a bunny and he was so small until puberty hit him like a fucking bus and he shot up like a tree."

 

Jungkook had murder in his eyes. "I can't believe I ever told you that. Loyalty is dead."

 

"Small?" Hoseok scoffed, "Jungkook? He's a fucking tower."

 

"Should've seen him before he hit puberty. Imagine a regular piece of white bread," Taehyung tells them, drawing a picture with his hands, "Now imagine it toasted. That's how hard puberty hit Jungkookie here."

 

Jimin laughed, throwing his entire body into it and Hoseok was pretty sure that Jungkook was two seconds away from snatching Taehyung up, marching the both of them outside and hanging Taehyung up on the flag pole by his underwear, right next to the national flag.

 

Hoseok still laughed though. This was absolute gold. He would be sure to remember all of this for the next time Jungkook decided to mouth off with him. Heheee, boy was gonna get it.

 

Before Jungkook could commit any federal crimes, Jimin stood up straighter, as did Taehyung, as they both recieved messages through their earpieces. 

 

"The Eagle is requesting the presence of the Seagull," Jimin says to Taehyung who nods, having recieved the same information himself.

 

Jungkook sighs, turning to Hoseok, "Looks like I gotta go."

 

Hoseok nods, oddly a bit disappointed that they were all about to leave.

 

"Work hard at training, okay?" Jungkook tells him, holding up a fist in the usual 'fighting!' style. Hoseok couldn't help but laugh. "Don't die, even though I know you're prone to. I really don't want to have to find another replacement."

 

"Yeah, yeah, whatever," he dismisses. Jungkook chuckles in return before turning to walk away with Jimin and Taehyung trailing behind him.

 

A few days later, Hoseok finally finishes his training course. He was sworn in and given more rules and regulations.

 

He now knew why Jungkook felt the need to run away all the time. He was rarely aloud to leave the Executive Residence. He was college age, but he had most of his lessons given to him by private tutors who were contracted and legally binded into secrecy. They would come to him and Jungkook would stay exactly where he was. He went to the local univeristy only once a week for weekly evaluations to make sure that he was learning what he was supposed to. Hoseok would have to follow him to these evaluations and sit and wait for him to finish. Of course, they would have to dress down to go to these meetings because no one else could know who exactly Jungkook's family was.

 

Hoseok was still unsure why Jungkook's existence was hidden from the press but he was not the position to question it. But now that he thought about it, that did explain how he and Jungkook had met. 

 

"The last guard who went with me to my evaluation was an idiot, " Jungkook told him, "He left to go to the bathroom and as soon as I noticed he was gone, I slipped out. I went to hang around the food markets and that's where I met you. Funny, huh?"

 

Hilarious, Hoseok had thought.

 

"You can't be sneaking out anymore," Hoseok had told him, "My contract says that you can't go anywhere without me present or at least within the general vicinity."

 

"I know, that's why we can just go get food together," Jungkook had said, as if the answer was simple, "I won't sneak away as long as you don't try shackle me to this ridiculous 'schedule' I have."

 

Hoseok had reluctantly agreed. It wasn't much of a schedule, just going to school and coming back. Sometimes he would go to musicial instrument lessons, but other than that, Jungkook was confined to the grounds of the Blue House. That really wasn't much, just six buildings including the executive residence where he lived.

 

And that was how he found himself going with Jungkook to his lessons on the next Friday. The whole entire first week had been pretty quiet. He met Jungkook every morning outside of his room.

 

"Why do you look like you were hit by a garbage truck?" Hoseok asks him bluntly.

 

"It's fucking 8am," Jungkook answers, smoothing his hair down with a beanie that Hoseok remembered him wearing when they first met. Jungkook tended to wear normal street clothing whenever he wasn't entering the main building of the Blue House and instead stayed with the Executive Residence and the areas for his lessons. "It's still the middle of the night."

 

"It's actually not," Hoseok argued, watching Jungkook with amused eyes as he rubbed his eyes and scrunched his nose. He snorts inwardly. Jungkook really did look a bunny. It was in the eyes and the nose, and the mouth too. Okay, actually, no. His entire persona just radiated: bunny. A tall ass bunny with muscles and an attitude.

 

"Well what do you know?" Jungkook snarks, "You've probably never seen the dark. Your face is so bright that you can never actually shut your eyes without the sun blasting in your eyes."

 

Hoseok laughs before smacking Jungkook upside the arm.

 

"Hey! You can't do that! You're my bodyguard!" Jungkook whines.

 

"There's actually a clause in my contract that says 'If Jungkook is being an irritating bitch, feel free to bitch slap him like the bitch he is'," Hoseok tells him. "Section 3 subsection C."

 

"You seem to like the word 'bitch' a lot," Jungkook says as they start their walk to the sub-building where he had his lessons, "Are you trying to tell me something? Do we need to phone a hotline?"

 

"Very funny."

 

"I take offence to that," Jungkook says, "I am hilarious."

 

"Let's see how hilarious you are when you go from a piece of burnt toast to a piece of soggy bread," Hoseok says, completely done with Jungkook's morning spiel.

 

"So you're saying you want to see me when I'm wet?"

 

"Oh my fucking god--" 

 

After Jungkook finished his lessons, the two of them would head to lunch. Jungkook was supposed to go back to his room to eat, seeing as it was basically a mini suite with a mini kitchen of it's own, and Hoseok was to take his break and head to the company cafeteria where he would meet up with Jimin and Taehyung and maybe even Hwasa, Moonbyul and Junhong.

 

But when Jungkook invites him to eat lunch with him, Hoseok has a hard time saying no. The first day he eats with Jungkook and then the second day the two of them join the others in the cafeteria. Jungkook was actually rather shy around the agents he hadn't ever met before, but because he was comfortable around Jimin, Taehyung and Hoseok, he seemed to have no problem participating in their conversations. They ate in the cafeteria together for the rest of the week.

 

That was until Friday where Hoseok had to take Jungkook to his weekly evalutations at the university. It wasn't a long ride, but it was definitely further away from the Blue House than Hoseok expected. They were escorted to the university in an expensive but inconspicious car and dropped off by the main entrance. Hoseok was given clear instructions about this aspect of his job.

 

1. Do not lose sight of "the Seagull" as Jungkook was so aptly codenamed

2. Do not let the Seagull leave the campus without your knowledge and accompaniment

3. Report to headquarters of any unauthorized locations you both enter within the hour

4. Do not let any unauthorized parties know about the Seagull's identity.

 

Simple enough rules. Jungkook seemed to know these rules easily because he followed them to a T and when he was done he came out to meet Hoseok and they were well on their way. Jungkook didn't stop at all to talk to any peers or friends and Hoseok wondered if the boy really was well and truly isolated.

 

"Can we go get street food?" Jungkook asks, "The marketplace is really near here and I'm hungry."

 

Restaurants were cleared with headquarters as long as Hoseok reported back within relative time. Food markets, however, were a different story. They were in public, with hundreds of potentially dangerous people walking around. However, as long as Jungkook was accompanied by Hoseok, it should be fine.

 

Pretty soon they were back to where they had first met, standing right in front of the food cart with the ahjumma handing Jungkook free goodies.

 

"Aigoo, you're back!" the ahjumma cooed. When she notices Hoseok she smiles, "Oh! You're the one who was here last time too! Come, come, eat, eat."

 

Together, they ate a good amount of food. The ahjumma would go and tend to other customers and then come back to them and coo at Jungkook.

 

"Ahjumma," Hoseok calls, "Is our Jungkookie your favorite?"

 

She laughs, "Of course! He comes here all the time and he's always so curteous and polite. And he's so handsome! I wish you were my son."

 

Jungkook blushes and just continues to eat his food in embarrassed silence while Hoseok laughs his ass off.

 

"Ahjumma, is our Jungkookie really that handsome?" Hoseok asks her, "Are you sure that he hasn't tricked you?"

 

"I'm sure!" she tells the both of them, "You saved my purse, that had all of my profits from the day in it. If you hadn't helped me then I would've been set really behind and could have potentially lost my business. I owe you a lot."

 

Jungkook swallows his food guilty, "Actually, ahjumma, I wasn't the one who stopped the burglar. Hoseok hyung here caught him."

 

The ahjumma looked as shocked as Hoseok felt. He wasn't expecting Jungkook to straight up admit to it.

 

"If Jungkook hadn't have slowed him down though, I wouldn't have been able to tackle him," Hoseok says quickly. Jungkook looks like he was about to argue but Hoseok cuts him off, "Have you seen how fast he runs? He could be a track star!"

 

The ahjumma nods, "He took off so fast it was like watching a shooting star."

 

Jungkook looked like he was drowning underneath all the compliments so Hoseok decides to have mercy on him and tells the ahjumma it was about time they head off. She insisted on giving each of them another stick of food on the house for their efforts. They try to decline it, but ahjumma's were nothing if not insistent.

 

*******************

 

Hoseok hadn't realized upon accepting the job that by being a full time personal bodyguard, it also meant being inside the room when Jungkook ate meals with his family. Apparently the First Family didn't eat dinner together that often. Jungkook's older brother, Jonghyun, was often away seeing as he went to a prestigous university pretty far from the Blue House and often stayed there during the weekdays and most weekends. 

 

But not this weekend. It had been almost a month since Hoseok had started working as Jungkook's bodyguard and it honestly hadn't been too bad. Okay, that was a lie. It wasn't bad at all. Jungkook didn't give him any problems at all, and in fact, Hoseok found himself quite enjoying his time hanging out--er, guarding Jungkook.

 

Because honestly, being Jungkook's gaurd was basically just hanging out with Jungkook all day. Especially on days when Jungkook didn't have classes to attend, the two of them would hang out all over the place. Turns out, when Jungkook stopped defying the rules set in place for him, he got a lot more leway to go places. As long as Hoseok was with them and they didn't draw any attention to themselves, then they could go wherever they wanted.

 

So most of their free days they spent exploring the area. 

 

Hoseok hadn't ever met the rest of Jungkook's family until that night though.

 

Jungkook had texted him saying that he had to go to dinner with his family that night. For some reason, Hoseok thought that maybe that meant he was to go home for the night, but then it turned out that he also had to be in attendance as well. When he met up with Jungkook later that evening, the boy looked rather...uncomfortable.

 

"Hey, are you okay?" Hoseok asks the younger, who looked a little pale.

 

"Huh?" Jungkook asks, "Oh. Yeah. I'm fine. Fine."

 

"Okay," Hoseok lets it go. Jungkook most certainly did not look fine. But he didn't know if he should push forward with his thoughts. Sure, he and Jungkook had become pretty good friends over the span of Hoseok's first month working with him, but he was still unsure about how to handle it when Jungkook would slip into weird quiet phases. It happened whenever someone mentioned his father or his family in general. 

 

Overall, Jungkook hadn't told Hoseok much about his family. Hoseok accepted it, knowing that whatever was going on with him and his family, it must be a sore spot and not something the boy liked to discuss. Hoseok didn't push it. 

 

So when he and Jungkook walked into the dining room where the family was already waiting, Hoseok didn't know what to expect.

 

Jungkook was the last one to show up. The President was already there, at the head of the table. His wife, Jungkook's mother was to his right. Directly across from her was Jungkook's older brother, who looked an awful lot like him except with a few major differences. Jungkook was prettier in Hoseok's opinion. Easy on the eyes and a brighter, more open face. He didn't have the same wide teeth as Jungkook either, and in Hoseok's opinion that was a damn shame. Or maybe he was just biased.

 

Hoseok wasn't the only personal bodyguard in the room. The president's own were at the far side of the table, closer to him as were the First Lady's and Junghyun's. Hoseok was off to the side, slightly behind Jungkook, slightly off to the side. From the angle he was at, he was at the perfect angle to be ignored by the family but also see everything that went on. He had a good angle to see Jungkook's face too.

 

And it did not look happy to be there.

 

"So Junghyun-ah, how's school?" the First Lady asks. Hoseok looks up at them, before he quickly ducks his head, knowing he's supposed to try his best to give the family as much privacy as possible.

 

"It's fine, thanks," Junghyung's answer was curt, short. It was obvious he didn't really want to talk about it.

 

His mother continued, "How were midterms? Full marks, I presume?"

 

Junghyun's voice was sharper, more flat than Jungkook's. He didn't speak with that same airy tone that Jungkook did, nor did he have the slight soothing lisp. Hoseok couldn't help but grimace slightly. 

 

"Yes, Mother," was all Junghyun said in return. Sensing that her son wasn't going to talk about it further, she switches the subject.

 

"And you Jungkook?" her tone seemed to take a complete sharp turn, something sharp underling her voice. Hoseok's eye flitter to Jungkook's frame, suddenly rigid and unmoving, "Midterm scores?"

 

"What does it matter?" Junghyun cuts in and for a moment Hoseok thinks that Jungkook's hyung was going to defend him to his mother, "It's not like he's gonna make anything of a political science degree. He already failed two semesters worth of poly sci tests, might as well just let him get that useless creative writing degree he wanted."

 

Hoseok was floored. Jungkook's shoulders were tense, his eyes hard as he stared at the plate in front of him.

 

Another sharp, yet softer voice cuts in, "That's enough."

 

It was final, commanding. The President's voice was strong like Jungkook's but still had that gentle undertone. Hoseok saw a lot more of the President in Jungkook than he saw in his mother or brother. They had the same eyes, gaurded but haunting. The First Lady and Junghyun both cut it out as soon as the man steps in, moving their eyes away and back to their food. Junghyun's jaw was locked, but Jungkook seemed to look relieved that the subject was no longer focused on him.

 

Until it was back, "So Jungkook-ah, how's working with your new bodyguard? You're not giving him trouble, right?"

 

If anything, the tips of Jungkook's ears burn red and Hoseok's own heart nearly jumps out of his chest at the mention of himself.

 

"Uh..." Jungkook seemed caught by surprise at the question as well. "It's been good...I'm not giving him any trouble. He's--He's a good bodyguard."

 

"He better be after all the men you've gotten fired," his mother quips. Hoseok's eyes shoot to her face and what he sees doesn't look to pleasant. "I'm telling you right now Jeon Jungkook, if you try to run away from this one too, I swear I will--"

 

"Calm down, dear," Jungkook's father starts, "Jungkook and I talked it out and he promised to be on his best behavior with this new one. Right, Jungkook?"

 

Jungkook, whose head had been hanging down in shame at being scolded by his mother, looks up at his father. He nods once, "Yes, father."

 

"Good." His father says, "I guess that should be enough for this subject, yes?"

 

Hoseok avoids Jungkook's gaze but when he looks up he catches the eye of someone he wasn't expecting. Junghyun was looking straight at him, his eyes narrowing slightly in suspicion before they both tear their gaze away from each other. Hoseok looks down and away, refusing to look up at the family for the rest of the dinner. 

 

Soon enough the dinner ends and Hoseok finds himself waiting for Jungkook to finish talking with his mother and father in the corner. Well...talking was putting it lightly. It looked more like he was being warned by his mother and his father was trying to keep her from losing her cool. Hoseok's mind wanders to a place perhaps it shouldn't be straying to. Everything he had thought of the President had been thrown up in the air ever since he started working as Jungkook's protector. For a while, Hoseok had come to think of the President as this authoritative figure who refused to let Jungkook live. Instead, locking him up in the Blue House like a twisted inverted modern day tale of Rupenzel.

 

 

Hoseok had come to think of President as, to put it lightly, not the best father. But something was different watching him interacting with his family right in front of Hoseok rather than just thinking about him in an abstract way, like just a concept of the man he was supposed to be. Instead, what Hoseok saw was a stark contrast to the image he had been building up in his mind. Of course, he knew the image of the President that was in the media, but seeing him interact with his family in person for the first time was something else entirely. He'd come to realize that his entire image in his mind had been turned on it's head.

 

Instead, Hoseok was beginning to question how much of Jungkook's solitary confinement was coming as an order from his father and how much was rather the influence of his overbearing mother.

 

Hoseok almost doesn't see when another figure comes up to him. 

 

"So," Junghyun's voice travels into Hoseok's ear, forcing Hoseok to take a step back in shock. Junghyun stares him up and down, making Hoseok fidgit uncomfortably, "You're little Kookie's new bodyguard, hmm?"

 

Hoseok didn't know how to handle the situation. He felt extremely uncomfortable, having this man he just met and knew so little about talking to him with words that were so obviously meant to antagonize.  So all he does is nod, not trusting his voice.

 

"Makes sense," Junghyun says, his tone insinuating, "You're totally his type."

 

Hoseok's head snaps up, "What?"

 

Junghyun laughs, crackly and unpleasant, "You're the kind to let him run off and do whatever he likes. He chose you, right?"

 

Hoseok really did not like what this man was saying to him right now. This was the man that Hoseok had been so used to seeing all over the press and yet his media persona was entirely different from what he was seeing right now. Just like that of the President, Hoseok's idea of Jungkook's older brother had been completley wrong. Hoseok couldn't say anything that he wanted to right now. Right now, he really wanted to demand of him to be clear about what he was trying to tell him, but Hoseok knew that wasn't at all appropriate.

 

"Yes," is all Hoseok can say, "He chose me."

 

Junghyun sniggers, "Well...good luck with that. He's a right troublemaker, that one. One misstep and you'll be out on your ass." He turns around to look at Jungkook who was talking to his father still, his mother having stepped away to talk to someone else. Junghyun steps to walk behind him before stepping back to whisper to him, "Better watch your back. Or he'll be after it."

 

Hoseok shivers, Junghyun's voice like spiders crawling down his back and making him want to jump out of his skin and then burn the meat suit. The man seems to have walked away by then because Jungkook comes up to him with his arms crossed and his eyes looking towards the door where Junghyun had just walked out. 

 

"Why was Junghyun talking to you?" Jungkook asks, not even bothering to tack on a 'hyung' to his own biological hyung. Hoseok notes it for later.

 

Before Hoseok could answer, Jungkook talks over him, "Let me guess, he told you that I'm a trouble maker and to watch your back."

 

Hoseok gapes, "How did you know that?"

 

Jungkook looks surprised at the revelation. "Are you serious? That was totally a guess, did he actually say that?!"

 

"I--"

 

"Jungkook-ah," the President calls, walking back up to the both of them, "Ah, I see you were telling this agent here about the rally I would like you attend this upcoming week?"

 

Jungkook, in fact, was not telling him that. But Hoseok takes it in stride, noding is confirmation, "Yes, sir."

 

Jungkook stays quiet. The President claps Jungkook on the shoulder and then turns to shake Hoseok's hand. "It's never nice to meet you, agent. I trust you'll take good care of my son?"

 

Hoseok suddenly feels like a thousand eyes were upon him when in reality only two sets were. Two pairs of the same eyes, open and searching, "Yes, sir. With my life."

 

The President chuckles, "I'm glad. I will see you both later. Have a good night."

 

And with that, the President leaves, his wife following shortly behind, not even bothering to acknowledge the two men standing there.

 

"Uh...." Hoseok stammers. Jungkook just sighs and takes his hand leading him out of the dining room and down the hall, back to the section where his living quarters were. 

 

When they were far enough away, Hoseok gathers the courage to ask, "Are all your family dinners that tense?"

 

Jungkook runs a hand through his gelled hair, messing it up and making it seem more wild and unhinged than the put together image he had at dinner. "Pretty much."

 

"Oh."

 

"Yeah..." Jungkook says.

 

"Damn."

 

"I know."

 

"Your hyung is creepy," Hoseok ends up blurting, not sure if he should regret his life choices immediately after letting it slip. But Jungkook laughs, the sparkle in his eye that had disappeared during dinner making a reappearance. 

 

"He really is," Jungkook agrees. "A bit of a jackass really."

 

"Hmmm," Hoseok contemplates, "Well, at least that's one thing you guys have in common."

 

Jungkook bumps his chest into Hoseok's shoulder sending him falling over slightly, "Yah!" Hoseok grits out, bumping back into Jungkook's chest with his own. They both rush down the hall, trying to chest bump the other into the wall, almost succeeding in breaking an expensive vase.

 

"Yah! Jungkook-ah!"

 

A high pitched giggle errupts down the hall as Hoseok breaks out into a sprint after the lanky muscle pig.

 

*********************

 

The day of the rally was upon them shortly and Hoseok had been completely briefed on the entire event. At the local city office, there was a speech scheduled where the President would be addressing the large gathering of people. Several thousand people were expected to show up and even though Jungkook wasn't widely known to the public, he was expected to still be there. Up on the stage, the President was standing above on the stage, flanked on the side by over a dozen secret service agents, many of whom Hoseok recognized. 

 

Junghyun was standing to the left of the stage, next to his mother and Hoseok couldn't help but think about how their family didn't look complete without Jungkook up on stage beside them. Instead, Jungkook was standing in the crowd slightly off to the right, watching with Hoseok by his side. 

 

The crowd was a lot larger than they had anticipated. There was probably upscale to aroud five thousand plus people in attendance, wanting to hear the President speak. It only made sense, really, Jungkook's father had been trying to introduce quite a few controversial bills into congress to become laws. Their nation was mostly conservative and the media was no expection, with their newspapers showcasing largely only the perspectives of right winged polticians and the wealthy conglomerates that funneled money into the global economy and expected just as much revenue, if not more, in return. And because of that, the bills the President was trying to introduce were not very popular.

 

What was he trying to change?

 

The College Entrance Examinations. The bill currently proposed wouldn't completely eliminate the test, but it would change it significantly. It would no longer be the only determining factor into deciding whether or not a student could go to a good university. This movement was in response to the growing unemployment rate in youth ages 18-25 and the ever increasing suicide rate in students as a result of the pressure of the examinations as well as the notion that finding a job after not passing the exam was moderately to very unlikely. 

 

Needless to say, businesses and companies were not fond of the idea at all and citizens were worried that by getting rid of the examinations that the government would be stripping the nations youth of their only chance to make something of their futures in the rapidly growing global landscape. 

 

The President had only been vocal about his plans a couple of times previously and today would be the first time that he would be addressing the public directly. 

 

So far the rally had been going pretty well, the crowd was only booing slightly and the rest seemed to be clapping and showing their approval. That was until the President dropped a bomb that many of them were not expecting.

 

"I am also planning to introduce a bill to go hand in hand with this bill that would limit the amount of hours in which employees can work and students can be in school per week as well as a new plan that will allow current employees to save more money for their retirement funds. This way we can reduce the rate of poverty in our nations elderly."

 

This did not go over well. 

 

Rapid questions from the audience rang out, accusatory, bigoted statements ringing out. The more the President tried to address them, the more agitated the crowd became. People began to chant and push and Hoseok could tell that at any moment, a mob could break out. Security had spread into the crowd, trying to get people to calm down, but Hoseok knew that wasn't going to happen.

 

And then a huge wave of people gets knocked to the ground, screams ringing out as people started to get shoved and in their attempts to protect themselves, started shoving back.

 

"Shit," Hoseok cursed, grasping ahold of Juingkook's hand and stepping in front of him. In his ear, instructions for every agent rang out.

 

"Get the President and the First Family out of here," the voice rang, "A mob is breaking out. Eagle, Falcon and Sparrow accounted for. Seagull: in crowd, disengage and retreat."

 

Right as Hoseok gets the message, the crowd surges again, nearly toppling the both of them over.

 

"Hyung!"

 

Hoseok doesn't think, but quickly grabs Jungkook's hand and runs as fast as he could (which was not very fast in this crowd), pushing people out of the way as they quickly make their way over to where the agency vehicles were supposed to be waiting for them. 

 

Hoseok stops short. Where the fuck were the cars?

 

"Hoseok, what--"

 

"The fucking cars are gone, shit," Hoseok says.

 

"How are we supposed to get out of here? They left without us," Jungkook asks, looking around, "It doesn't matter anyway, I can't exactly be seen with the secret service."

 

Shit, he was right. 

 

They were still in the middle of the crowd, having been swept in. Bodies pressed into them for every side as Jungkook's body was pressed fully against his side, arm wrapped around his side. Hoseok spreads his arm, trying to make a human blockade with his body so that Jungkook wouldn't be crushed, but it wasn't working. Hoseok wasn't enough to protect Jungkook in the middle of the crowd until it calmed down. Their only hope was to get out of the crowd and fast.

 

Hoseok snatches Jungkook's hand back up and makes a break in the other direction, squeezing through the outward ring of people. To the rest of the crowd, they would just look like regular citizens trying to get out of the crowd. In reality, Hoseok was on edge, his adrenaline picking up as a strange protective force took over him. He pushed forward, turning back to gage the look on the Jungkook's face before turning back to push through the last bit of people.

 

Before they knew it, they were squeezing out and the rush of air into his lungs was almost as much of a relief as seeing Jungkook standing unharmed.

 

"You okay?" Hoseok asks, coming up to Jungkook's side and pushing him up so that instead of resting on his knees, Hoseok could see his face. He brings his palm to Jungkook's cheek.

 

Jungkook nods, out of breath and sweating, "Yeah, I'm fine."

 

Hearing the confirmation from Jungkook's lips settled the fire in Hoseok's stomach slightly. But they weren't completely out of the clear yet.

 

"Come on," Hoseok says, hand falling back into Jungkook's, "We've gotta ditch the crowd and get somewhere secure until we can get back in contact with the Blue House."

 

Hoseok pulls Jungkook along, moving along the street until they reach the bridge. His apartment wasn't too far away from where the rally had taken place but it wasn't exactly near. He would've taken Jungkook on the bus, but it was overflowing with people and he couldn't shove Jungkook back into that kind of atmosphere. 

 

They had been speed walking the entire time, their breathing labored and the heat of the day making their throats parched as the water in their bodies worked to cool down their bodies.

 

Soon enough, they make it to the run down apartment building where Hoseok lives. Hoseok leads Jungkook up the stairs (because there wasn't an elevator and Hoseok lived on the top floor) and by the time they reach his apartment, they were dying on the inside and outside. 

 

"Where are we?" Jungkook asks, as Hoseok continues to lead him down the hall to his own apartment. 

 

"My apartment," Hoseok answers, only realizing that he hadn't let go of Jungkook's hand the whole time until he had to reach into his pocket to find his keys. 

 

"Your--" Jungkook's eyes widen but he doesn't elaborate as Hoseok opens the door and leads them in. 

 

"Wait here until I can get in touch with headquarters," Hoseok tells him, leading him into the small living room and directing him towards the couch. Jungkook nods and Hoseok picks up his new phone, one he finally saved enough money up to buy and heads into the other room.

 

 

************

 

Jungkook stood in the middle of Hoseok's apartment, completely frozen and not sure what to do with himself at all. Hoseok had told him to sit on the couch, but Jungkook's limbs decided to disobey him today and wouldn't take a step. Instead, Jungkook just looked around. 

 

The place looked like someone lived there, but at the same time it looked like whoever did hadn't been spending that much time here. It made sense, Hoseok spent most of his time in the Blue House or with Jungkook and he wouldn't be at home unless it was to sleep. 

 

The apartment was an open floor plan and the only door was to the bathroom and the closet. The rest was all open, a small set of stairs leading up into a bedroom like landing that had Hoseok's bed that was pushed up against the wall. There was a large window to the left, slightly open and streaming in light. The apartment was exceptionally clean, and Jungkook couldn't help but snort.

 

Hoseok was such a neat freak and it most certainly showed in the way he had his apartment. There weren't many possesions in the apartment other than a couch and a small table in front of a small economy sized television set. 

 

Hoseok was standing near his bed, talking lowly on the phone with headquarters. Hoseok's posture looked uncomfortable, like he didn't like what he was hearing. Over the month that Jungkook had gotten to know Hoseok, he had come to learn that a lot of things stressed Hoseok out. It wasn't exactly unwarranted either. He had a stressful job, especially considering he had to look after him, the problematic child, and a lot of responsibility rested on him. 

 

Jungkook tried his best not to add to the stress. He knew it was his fault that Hoseok had this job, so he figured if he just behaved and tried to limit his rebellious tendencies to a minimum, then Hoseok wouldn't be as stressed.

 

Those were his favorite times of the day. When he was done with class and they didn't have to stay cooped up in the Blue House. Hoseok would tell him about a restaurant he found nearby and they would go eat and hang out. It was fun, actually getting to go places and see the city outside of the Blue House. Jungkook's old guards used to never let him go anywhere. Jungkook would suggest going somewhere and they would always respond with monotonous, clipped answers 'That is unauthorized.'

 

"Well then make it fucking authorized," Jungkook would seethe back, but that would just make the guard more mad and they would further ignore Jungkook, leaving him with no choice but to stay where he was or sneak out. It didn't take a genius to figure out which choice he went with. 

 

It wasn't like the guards didn't have the power to request authorized outings. Sure, it took a little bit of time and was a slightly complicated process, but it wasn't impossible. Jungkook immensely appreciated that Hoseok took the time to actually go through the process so that he could leave the Blue House every now and then. He was actually starting to feel like maybe he wasn't as caged as he used to be. Maybe.

 

In the past, his brother or his mother had been the one to choose his bodygaurds, but this time he had begged his father to let him choose for once. His father had been hesitant, worried that Jungkook would try to abuse the power, but Jungkook had been adamant. He had thought that maybe if he could choose who would be the one guarding him, he could find a way to stop feeling like he was slowly rotting away on the dungeon floors of the pavilion of blue tiles.

 

Hoseok was everything he could have hoped for and more. Jungkook hadn't held any notions that his guard would become his friend. No, in fact, all he wanted was to have someone who would give him a little bit more leeway, and he was okay with the guard keeping their professional distance if that's what they wanted.

 

He hadn't expected to gain a friend out of this. 

 

How was he to know that by running into Hoseok that day and letting him drag him to get food, that he had actually met the person who would give him the key to his freedom. Or at least, loosen the chains that bound him.

 

Jungkook didn't have many friends. He wasn't at school enough to make friends, and even if he had been, he would have been apprehensive to approach people. Jungkook's father had been in office since he was 17 and Jungkook had been plucked out of his middle school in Busan and placed into private school all the way in Seoul. Whatever friends he might've had, he lost contact with and any way of making new ones was impossible.

 

So he made friends with the people who worked in the Blue House. There weren't many people in who worked there that were near Jungkook's age, so he didn't have very many friends in the Blue House either. The only ones who were relatively near his age were Taehyung and Jimin, both 19 at the time and newly recruited into the security sector. They were first hesistant to be friends with him, it made sense seeing as he was who he was. But then they started to get used to him being around and they saw that he wasn't really the troublemaker that he was somehow branded as. 

 

They were his closest friends. Yet they didn't get to hang out that often, seeing as they both got promoted and often had to be away from Jungkook. Jungkook had his own schedules and couldn't hang out with them much either, but when they did get to, Jungkook always had a good time.

 

Other than those two, Jungkook had only made friends with some of the children of other officials who sometimes visited the Blue House. They somewhat bonded with Jungkook because they also grew up in the political sphere but at the same time, those children were always allowed out in public with their families and were actually acknowledged by the world as part of their family. Jungkook was hidden. He still didn't know why, but even back when his father hadn't been President, he hadn't been allowed to go to the public events his family attended or have anyone know who exactly he was.

 

A few years ago, one person he had met in particular was someone Jungkook had thought was especially important to him. He actually acknowledged Jungkook and they had been...well they had been something to each other. But it had ended in flames and Jungkook didn't like to think about him anymore. It still kind of stung.

 

Hoseok was honestly the first friend he had made outside of the Blue House. Jungkook would've thought that maybe having his only outside friend suddenly become his bodyguard might've turned their relationship sour, especially with their ambiguous relationship, but Jungkook had been pleasantly surprised by the outcome. Hoseok treated him differently from everyone else in life...he treated him like....like...

 

Well, Jungkook wasn't exactly sure. All he knew was that when he was having fun with Hoseok, he always felt the most happy. He knew that even though he could take care of himself just fine, when he was with Hoseok he felt safe, cared for. Jungkook didn't know, but maybe that was something he had been craving for a long time. His mother was never the most caring person, keeping him at arms distance and really only interacting with him when she had to. His brother was much older than him, and most of the time was far away attending his boarding school. His father was the only one who Jungkook had ever felt that kind of care from.

 

His father would smile at him and give him cookies and pet his head. His father would take him to the park and sit with him and talk about whatever childish nonsense Jungkook was talking about at the time. Jungkook loved his father a lot. 

 

Which is why it was so devastating to him when he suddenly became the President. Jungkook knew his father was a politican, but he hadn't been aware that his father was running for President. The elections all happened so fast and before he knew it, his father was the head of the country and Jungkook hardly saw him anymore. Jungkook hardly saw any of his family anymore. 

 

He was well and truly on his own.

 

Jungkook had learned how to be independent from a very young age. That was what kept him from falling into that massive black hole of lonliness that often threatened to swallow his heart. He thanked his lucky stars every day that he had Jimin and Taehyung to be there for him whenever they could. He doubted they would ever know how grateful he was to have them in his life, even if they were embarassing morons most of the time.

 

Hoseok was a different story. 

 

"Okay, so that was headquarters," Hoseok tells him, having finished his phone call and walked back to the living room where Jungkook was still standing awkwardly. "They said that the mob calmed down outside of the city office, but some protestors have moved to the front of the Blue House. Everyone else is fine inside, but if we were to head back right now, they might spot us seeing as there are quite a few media sources trying to cover what happened."

 

Jungkook nods, "Okay...so what does that mean?"

 

"It means we have to stay here for a couple hours, maybe more, until I get the call from headquarters with the all clear to head back," Hoseok tells him, a somewhat guilty look on his face, "Sorry for making you stay in this cramped place."

 

Jungkook shrugs it off, "It's not so bad. This place is very you."

 

Hoseok snorts, "I'm gonna try to take that as a compliment." 

 

It was a compliment, Jungkook realizes. He hadn't even thought to use it as a backhanded tease. Instead, it had just come out as a genuine compliment. Jungkook decides to keep that information to himself. It was a lot easier to just let Hoseok think what he wanted. Hoseok had gone back to his phone and was texting someone.

 

"I'm calling Yoongi and another friend over," Hoseok tells him, "They can bring us food and provide us with entertainment seeing as I don't have cable."

 

"Well thank fuck," Jungkook jumps back into his ways, "I thought I was gonna have to stay here and wait for the paint to dry with you."

 

"You are so lucky that I'm legally bound not to fuck your face up," Hoseok retorts.

 

Jungkook raises his eyebrows, just as Hoseok notices what kind of trap he just set up for himself.

 

"Don't you fucking dare."

 

"Are you saying you want to fuck my--"

 

Hoseok shoves him onto the couch and smashes a pillow over his face, muffling Jungkook's hysterical laughter.

 

 

*************

 

 

Soon enough, there was a knock on the door. 

 

"That should be Seokjin with the food," Hoseok says, heading towards the door. Jungkook stayed put on the couch as the three men filed into the apartment.

 

"Oh--" a tall man with broad shoulders and a strikingly beautiful face says. Standing next to the shorter Yoongi beside him, the man looked even bigger. "Who's this, Hoseok-ah?"

 

Hoseok takes the cartons of food from the man's hands, heading towards the table in front of his couch. 

 

"Sup, kid" Yoongi says in greeting. Jungkook gives a small smile and a nod in his direction.

 

"Seokjin-hyung, this is Jungkook, my pro--" Hoseok stops, realizing what he was about to say. Jungkook notes it right away. He was about to say 'protectee'. Somehow the notion leaves a bitter taste on Jungkook's tongue. "My friend."

 

Jungkook looks up at the two still standing. "Friend?" Seokjin asks, "How come I'm only meeting him now then? You're such a bad friend, Hoseok."

 

Hoseok looks down, a bit guilty, biting his lip and rubbing the back of his neck. The man named Seokjin smiles at Jungkook and almost immediately the bit of hositility Jungkook had been feeling towards the unfamiliar man dissipates. The man smiles at Jungkook and places a large carton in front of him. 

 

"I was going to make food for everyone tonight, but Yoongi insisted we just pick up take out," Seokjin grumbles.

 

"Because if you cook the food it'll take ten hours and I didn't want to starve waiting for you to finish making your feast," Yoongi shoots back. 

 

"Aigoo, you're so impatient Yoongi," Seokjin scolds, "You're lucky I make you food at all, otherwise you would starve."

 

The four of them had set up their food around the table, as Jungkook watched them interact. 

 

"So, Jungkook, how old are you?" Seokjin asks, "You don't look a day over 18."

 

Jungkook's skin prickles. He knew Seokjin didn't mean anything by it, but being made fun of because of his age always got him agitated.

 

"Don't worry, Jin-hyung, he's legal, just ask Hoseok," Yoongi chuckles, voice devious and gleeful.

 

Seokjin's eyebrows skyrocket as Hoseok chokes on his chopsticks and Jungkook's dumpling flies off his plate and lands on his plate with a sickly plop!

 

Yoongi just sits there cackling away, smacking his knee as he laughed at them, "Oh man, I'm so happy I agreed to come here tonight--"

 

"And what is that supposed to mean?" Seokjin asks, sharp eyes turning to Hoseok like he was interrogating a serial rapist.

 

"It doesn't mean anything," Hoseok tries to counter, although the telltale pink tint of his cheeks gave him away.

 

"Sure it doesn't, Seok-ah," Yoongi adds. Seokjin goes off and Hoseok adamantly tries to counter it to the best of his ability while Yoongi just laughs like a donkey at the chaos he had stirred up.

 

"I'm 21," Jungkook finally pipes up, "As Yoongi knows because he's served me alcohol before. That's how they know I'm legal."

 

The room was quiet as they look at Jungkook. Seokjin seems to calm down at this, "Oh." He turns to everyone else, "Well, why didn't you idiots say so!"

 

Yoongi tries to defend himself against Seokjin who was reaming his ass for trying to suggest something else. That something else still making Jungkook frozen to his seat, unable to even wipe his sweaty palms on his pants. He chances a glance up and accidentally meets Hoseok's gaze.

 

I'm sorry for them, Hoseok mouths to him before patting his knee and whispering, "And thanks."

 

Jungkook nods trying to desperately ignore the way his knee didn't stop tingling for an uncomfortably long time.

 

For the next few hours, Jungkook seemed to get more comfortable around Seokjin and Yoongi. Sure, he had met Yoongi before but he had never gotten a chance to really interact with the man that much. Like Jungkook had expected, the man was sarcastic and witty but Jungkook found himself laughing more times than not at all the glorious one-liners that came out of the man's mouth. He wished he had his notebook with him to take notes. Gotta save this shit for later.

 

Seokjin didn't appreciate the crude humor though. More times than not, he was scolding Yoongi over his language or reminding Hoseok not to inhale his food. In turn, Hoseok would call Seokjin out for being a hypocrite when he could inhale 20 chicken nuggets in 20 seconds, as he instead stole the chicken from Seokjin's plate and fed it to Jungkook.

 

At one point in the evening, Hoseok tried to reach over for his drink that was resting on the side table closest to Jungkook. Seeing as he couldn't reach it, he started whining, "Jungkook-ahhhhhhhh~"

 

Jungkook chuckled, "What?"

 

"Pass me my drink, please~" Hoseok started, throwing out his best aegyo. Jungkook's eyes widened. What was this fresh hell his eyes were subjected to?

 

"What, you mean this?" Jungkook lifted the cola up, "This drink?"

 

Hoseok who was laying on the other side of the couch, mumbled his affirmation, "Gimme, gimme~"

 

Jungkook held the drink out to him, but seeing as Hoseok refused to much more than lift his arm up from where he was sitting, he still couldn't reach.

 

The whining intensified, "My drink~~~~"

 

Jungkook cackled, this was too damn amusing. He purposely held the drink far enough away where Hoseok couldn't reach it, "Kookie~~ Please~~~"

 

Jungkook couldn't help but laugh at the antics, it was just too funny to not to mess with him. Suddenly the drink is snatched out of his hands by Yoongi who shoves it in Hoseok's face, "Oh my god, would you shut up, please? I came here for free food and arguably good company. I didn't come here to watch you use your aegyo to flirt with a fetus."

 

Yoongi turned to walk away but Hoseok had already shot his leg out, effectively causing Yoongi to trip over his feet and fall flat on his ass on the floor. "Don't call him a fetus."

 

"Hoseok, you son of a--"

 

"Okay!" Seokjin stands up, picking Yoongi up off the floor from where Hoseok was currently rolling all over his carpet laughing his ass off about the terrified squeak of shock Yoongi had made when he plummeted to the ground. "I think it's time we got you home."

 

Yoongi still looked like he wanted to shove Hoseok under a guillotine but he gets up and moves to pack up his stuff alongside Seokjin, "Fine, fine, but don't think I'm not gonna come after your ass, Hoseok."

 

"Yeah, yeah."

 

"Besides, maybe Minnie's gone home by now," Yoongi mumbles as he makes to move to grab his jacket off the chair. Seokjin comes over to Jungkook, holding his hand out to shake. Jungkook takes it.

 

"It was nice to meet you, Jungkook," Seokjin smiles warmly, "I'm sorry for the hot mess that is Min Yoongi, but the longer you hang around Hoseok and the rest of us, you'll come to find that we all belong in a mental hospital."

 

Jungkook whole heartedly agreed with that statement.

 

Seokjin heads to the door and Yoongi comes over to say bye to Hoseok and Jungkook, "See you guys later."

 

"Bye, Yoongi-hyung," Hoseok calls.

 

"Bye," Jungkook says as a last minute echo.

 

After the both of them leave, Hoseok stands to clean everything up and Jungkook does the same, helping him clean up the mess. "Ah, you don't have to Jungkook, I got it."

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "It's okay, I'll help."

 

Hoseok looks to him with a surprised yet grateful smile, "Oh...okay!"

 

Cleaning up takes less than five minutes before they finish and the both of them are sitting back on Hoseok's couch.

 

"You must have known them for a long time, Yoongi and Seokjin," Jungkook muses, thinking back on the evening.

 

Hoseok makes a noise at the back of his throat, "I've known those idiots for way too long. Especially Yoongi."

 

"How long have you known him?" Jungkook asks.

 

"Almost seven years," Hoseok answers, "We met back in high school actually. I had just moved from Gwangju and he from Daegu."

 

"You're from Gwangju?" Jungkooks asks, "Why does that not surprise me?"

 

"Because I'm the light of your life?" Hoseok quirks, smiling his heart shaped smile while his hands come up to frame his face as he tilts his head with a puppy dog style whimper.

 

"No, because you're annoying as fuck."

 

"Rude!" Hoseok yells, "At least I'm not as cold like you and Yoongi. I swear, you Gyeongsang-do men all live up to your stereotypes. Especially, you. You're such a typical Busan man."

 

Jungkook startles, "How did you know I was from Busan?! I never told you that."

 

Hoseok actually laughs, "Oh man, it's so obvious! You act like a big macho man when really you're just a softy who lives for RomCom's and poetry."

 

"I've never watched a RomCom in my life," Jungkook snaps. Lies. He's actually seen The Notebook like twelve times. He had a lot of spare time growing up okay?

 

"Yeah, like I believe that," Hoseok says, leaning his side against the couch where the both of them where lounging, his body coming unconsciously closer until their knees where only a few inches from each other.

 

"No, seriously, how'd you know?" Jungkook asks. Had he guessed? Or had he read it somewhere online maybe?

 

Hoseok brings his finger to his mouth, "It's a secret."

 

"I honestly can't believe how lame you are."

 

Hoseok shoves his shoulder, "Okay, okay, I'll tell you. It's because whenever you get really excited, your accent slips out jussstttt slightly. It's actually kind of cute."

 

Jungkook does his best not to let the burning behind his cheeks become obvious in his face. Instead, he keeps his famous Busan poker face and laughs emptily. "Ahaha, I resent that."

 

"Awwwwww, Jungkookiiieeeee~" Hoseok launches himself forward, puckering his lips together, "Jungkookie is a cutieeee~~~"

 

"Ew, no, stop get off me! You probably have cooties! I don't know you like that! Stranger danger!" Jungkook hollers as he trries to shove Hoseok away. 

 

"Hey! I thought we weren't strangers anymore! I thought we were friends." Hoseok goes back to acting pouty. Okay, this aegyo shit has gotta stop. Now. 

 

Jungkook scoffs, "You don't earn the title of friend until you know me like Jimin and Taehyung."

 

Hoseok groans loudly, "That's not fair!"

 

"Life's not fair. And then you die."

 

"I swear to God, you are a living emo meme."

 

"I'm not emo!"

 

"Maybe I'll just ask Jimin to tell me all the dirt he has on you," Hoseok strokes his imaginary goatee.

 

"Jimin won't tell you shit," Jungkook states, mater of factly. 

 

"I wouldn't be too sure," Hoseok says back, "I know his weaknesses. According to Yoongi, Jimin is weak for--"

 

"Wait," Jungkook interupts, "Jimin knows Yoongi?"

 

Hoseok nods, "Yeah? Yoongi's Jimin's boyfriend. Of like...two and a half years."

 

Jungkook gapes like someone told him his favorite puppy was just run over, "How the hell did I never know this?"

 

Hoseok laughs, "Yoongi's a pretty private person and Jimin doesn't exactly go around announcing it to the world."

 

"But--I thought we were friends!" Jungkook was so scandalized right now. "Now you are telling me that one of my closest friends whom I have known for almost five years has been keeping this from me the whole time?!"

 

Hoseok laughs out loud, "It's okay, Jungkook. I didn't find out until 6 months after they got together. Seokjin didn't find out until a year. He bursted maybe a hundred blood vessels. And then he handed Yoongi and Jimin their asses with a spatula. He has like 8 of them. One especially for ass whipings."

 

Jungkook harumphs, "That's still not fair."

 

"Life's unfair. And then you die." Hoseok repeats Jungkook's own words back to him.

 

"I fucking hate you."

 

"Love you too, Kookie."

 

"I should slap you."

 

"Try me bitch."

 

"But no, seriously, how does that work?" Jungkook asks, "Jimin is at the Blue House almost all day long. How does even have time for a relationship?"

 

Hoseok thinks for a moment, "Well. I guess he's lucky. Yoongi's extremely low mantainence, and as you probably heard, Seokjin cooks most of his meals for him. Yoongi just works for the rest of the time."

 

"Doesn't he just own a bar?"

 

"Yeah, but he's also a producer on the side," Hoseok tells him, "It requires a lot of time working on your own and the way their jobs work out means that they don't see each other until the late evenings or on weekends. But I haven't heard any complaints from either of them."

 

"Wow," was all Jungkook could say. That had to be tough.

 

"Yeah," Hoseok says, "Did you know that Jimin was actually the one who told me about the openings as a secret service agent? He's also one of my references. I guess he knew that I really needed a job and knowing my background creditentials, knew it would be a good job. He was so surprised when he found out that you promoted me to your bodyguard."

 

"Really?" Jungkook asks, having not realized that Jimin was in a prime place to completely fuck over all of his cred here.

 

Hoseok nods, "He said something along the lines of 'I can't believe you got promoted before you even worked one day; why do good things never happen to me?'"

 

"Melodramtic asshole," Jungkook snorts.

 

"Look who's talking," Hoseok laughs.

 

Before Jungkook has a chance to deliever another one of his Golden Comebacks™, Hoseok's phone goes off. 

 

"Looks like we're all cleared to head back to the Blue House," Hoseok says with a sigh.

 

"Oh." Jungkook tries to hide the disappointment in his voice. Oddly, he doesn't want to leave Hoseok's apartment just yet. It almost felt like a safe heaven; completely seperate from the world outside. It was quaint and no where near the luxury Jungkook had grown up used to but honestly, Jungkook already liked it better than any of the houses he had lived in the past. Maybe it was the welcoming vibes that came from all side. Or maybe it was just Hoseok's personality radiating from all over.

 

Hoseok gives him a sympathetic look, seemingly knowing that Jungkook didn't want to go back to the Blue House just yet.

 

"Come on," Hoseok says, picking up his hand and pulling him up off the couch. "Gotta get back before your family gets worried."

 

Jungkook highly doubted they would, but he nods his head, squeezing Hoseok's hand the slightest bit, "Okay, let's go."

 

Maybe trusting Hoseok wasn't such a bad idea.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

It's about another month later, when the annual Presidential Gala was announced. 

 

Jungkook was expected to go to these things just as well; his father insisting. Apparently, to the rest of the President's cabinet and other politicians, Jungkook was a distant nephew who lived with the family due to untimely circumstances. There was no story there really, therefore the media never covered him and his existence was still virtually unknown unless anyone took the time to dig deeper through the family's ancestry.

 

Jungkook still had to go, seeing as his mother wanted him to learn the ways of the political sphere seeing as both Jungkook and his older brother were expected to stick within the family tradition and go into politics. Jungkook's older brother already had many connections. Other politicians thought he was a charming man with the kind of intelligence that would be perfect in their government. He was a shoo in to be elected as soon as he ran for a position.

 

Jungkook, on the other hand, was just someone that the politicians wives liked to chat up and pretend that they weren't flirting with someone who was half their age and could be the age of one of their sons. 

 

Jungkook was really not happy that he had to go to yet another one of these things.

 

A knock on his door reminds him that it was nearing time to go. He sighed. "Come in!"

 

The door opens and Hoseok slips inside, "Hey, Jungkook you ready to g--"

 

Jungkook turns around, his eyes catching the way Hoseok's face shown with the moisturizer in the BB cream he was obviously using. Hoseok was standing still, eyes locked on Jungkook who was standing by the mirror. His jaw was a little slack, his eyes widening slightly upon making eye contact. 

 

Jungkook quirked his mouth up, smiling at Hoseok. "Hey."

 

Hoseok's eyes snapped up, breath catching somewhat, "Uh, yeah--I mean, hey! Hi. Uh, you clean up well. I was, uh...surprised."

 

Jungkook snorts, reaching up to mess with his bowtie, "It's just a suit. Calm down."

 

Hoseok lets out a breathy laugh, "Yeah...Yeah, I know." 

 

Jungkook was wearing a standard suit really, black and white, with his hair styled a lot more nicely than usual. He usually put a lot more effort into his appearance whenever these big galas came up. He would use more face makeup rather than just simple face mositurizer. Now he had his eyes lined with kohl and and a bit of skin toner cream on as well. 

 

"You don't look to bad yourself," Jungkook couldn't help but pile on the sleaze, seeing as Hoseok reacted so hilariously to it. 

 

He cringed, "Oh god, stop, stop I'm gonna throw up. I lied, you look gross. Please set yourself on fire to spare my eyes the sight of you."

 

"Yeah, right, you like what you see, don't even lie," Jungkook smirks. He runs his hands over his wardrobe dreser, pulling out a pair of his silver earrings that he didn't actually get to wear that often. They were inconspicous enough to wear to a formal dinner but flashy enough to be go well with the rest of what he was wearing. Hoseok's eyes followed the path of his hands to his ears but he didn't remark anything about them.

 

Hoseok deadpans at him, his eyes comically wide, "Seriously, what is with you? One minute you are a shy bunny who can't even speak two words without stuttering and then the next minute you are giving me bedroom eyes--which, not gonna lie, are kinda freaking me out--and being the greasiest motherfucker on the planet. Are you a gemini? Cause you seem pretty two-faced."

 

"One, that's offensive to gemini's and two, I'm a virgo, I can't believe you forgot this extremely important piece of information!" Jungkook tells him, hand on his chest, gasping like a diva who was just told her face looked dusty. How dare this peasent forget this about him? It was like forgetting him name! Punishable by death.

 

"Shut up, it's not like you know my--"

 

"Aquarius," Jungkook interupts, "And honestly, you are such an aquarius."

 

"What the fuck is that supposed to mean?!" Hoseok looked like he was about to launch a grenade at him. Time to duck out!

 

"Oh would you look a the time, it's time to descend into hell!" Jungkook quickly changes the subject as he latches onto Hoseok's arm and drags him out of his room. 

 

 

****************

 

 

On the way over, Hoseok sits next to Jungkook in the car, "Do you really not like these functions?"

 

Jungkook makes a gruff noise, "I hate these things."

 

"Why?" Hoseok couldn't help but ask.

 

"I have to hide myself from the media, which I guess isn't anything I'm not used to," Jungkook tells him, "but once I get inside, the people inside are allowed to harrass me however they want. I'm a wide open target, and it's not fun at all."

 

Hoseok looks down. He hadn't thought of that. He had gotten used to nobody knowing who Jungkook was in their interactions. He hadn't thought about people who knew of his existence but didn't know the extent of who he was related to.

 

"Well," Hoseok says, patting Jungkook's thigh, "I'll be with you tonight and I'm your bodyguard, so I can fend off anyone you don't want to come near you."

 

Jungkook's face lifts in a grateful expression and Hoseok feels a bit lighter, "Thanks, hyung."

 

Hoseok smiles at Jungkook as the boy turns his head to look forward. Hoseok's eyes linger on him for a little while longer. It wasn't often that Jungkook called him hyung. In fact, it was rarely ever. Hoseok was quick to learn that Jungkook didn't call anybody hyung unless he felt they earned it. To know that Jungkook had called him hyung several times before, on accident if anything else, never failed to lift Hoseok's spirits. 

 

Soon they arrive at the gala, which was being held in a large fancy hotel on the expensive side of Seoul. Hoseok watches as politicians walk into the hotel, with the paparazzi hanging around them blocked off by ropes. It almost reminded Hoseok of what the red carpet would look like, except with old ugly politicians with no talent rather than any of the idols who were young and beautiful. Hoseok glances at Jungkook. He would probably be the only one who would fit the concept. The boys face was admittedly, extremely beautiful--eyes the shapes of almonds and eyes dark and shining. His jawline was sharp but softened with the presence of fluffy cheeks. His face was strong to the point where he could probably fool the unsuspecting bystander that he was older and manlier than he was, but Hoseok knew better. 

 

Hoseok knew first hand that Jungkook's eyebrows weren't always on point and that he often liked to walk around with frizzy hair that made it look like a perm. He liked to chew crackers in between his lips rather than just take one bite at a time and he rubbed his eyes all the time to the point where they looked bloated. But even through all of these times, the younger looked downright adorable. Not that Hoseok would ever tell him that. Jungkook would literally chop his head off if he said that to him. 

 

But Hoseok couldn't help it. Jungkook was too cute most of the time and Hoseok always found himself having to real himself in from jumping all over the younger and squealing about how adorable he was being. It was maddeningly difficult.

 

Even still, Jungkook did in fact know how to clean up extremely well. Hoseok would be lying if he didn't acknowledge that Jungkook didn't look extremely attractive right now. 

 

As they exit the car and enter the building there were significantly less cameras taking pictures of them. A few snaps were taken, but other than that, they entered the premises without much hassle. 

 

On the inside, the hotel was completely done up, decorated beautifully with twinkling lights and an overall vibe of expensive everywhere he looked. Jungkook didn't look phased at all. President Jeon hadn't arrived yet and neither had any of the rest of Jungkook's family. The two of them had purposely arrived early than everyone else in order to not draw attention to themselves. Or rather, to Jungkook.

 

There were many important people all around. Hoseok noticed that there were many big name faces in the crowd of people. Almost every member of the President's cabinet was here with their wives as were many of the countries congressmen. There were a large amount of people Hoseok didn't recognize either. Hoseok just stood by Jungkook's side as the pair of them made their way to the bar to get something to drink. After that they just stood by the side of the room, waiting for the President to show up. 

 

"Is this usually how boring these galas are?" Hoseok asks, never having been to one of these things before. He didn't know how they usually went down. But he had figured that something at least midly entertaining would have happened by now. But nope. Literally nothing. Unless you count the waiter sneezing like 5 times in a row because of one senator's wifes perfum. But nobody besides Hoseok noticed that. 

 

"Pretty much," Jungkook grumbles. He leanded against the wall, letting himself slump slightly but still holding his stance properly. And yet he still looked like a prince who had just walked out of a high fashion magazine. He was a literal wall flower.

 

Some people approached them, a few people who recognized him and adressed him as the President's distant nephew, which confused Hoseok but he went with it. 

 

It wasn't until the women started coming up that Hoseok realized why Jungkook didn't like coming to these things.

 

"Hi there," one woman came up to them, her eyes mostly locked on Jungkook, "I'm Lee Minah. What's your name?"

 

Looking at Jungkook, it was easy to tell that Jungkook was uncomfortable. "Jungkook." 

 

Jungkook continued to give one word answers, short and curt, until the woman lost interest and left them. Of course, a few more women came up to them after that--or rather, came up to Jungkook-- and tried to engage him in conversation. Never once did Jungkook try to continue the conversation, only answering politely and never once mentioning his last name. If they knew it, then they knew. If they didn't, he wasn't about to tell them.

 

It wasn't until the President showed up that people stopped paying attention to Jungkook and Hoseok by his side. The President's entrance was as grand as they come, flanked by guards and the Vice President as well as the rest of Jungkook's family. His mother was dressed impeccably and his older brother looked like a GQ reject.

 

Jungkook regarded them with a guarded expression, jaw tensing but his face not changing whatsoever. Hoseok didn't even notice how his hand had drifted from Jungkook's upper arm to his back, resting there whilst they listened to the President speak to the grand room filled with people. 

 

"Thank you all for attending the Gala, and I hope you have a good rest of the night," The President concludes his speech and steps down off the podium. The party was in full swing now and Jungkook had already chugged down three glasses of champagne, Hoseok giving him disapproving glances but not actually apprehending him for it. The man deserved to drink if he wanted to. After all, even Hoseok was feeling stressed out just by seeing Jungkook get so agitated as the night wore on.

 

Hoseok had stuck by Jungkook's side the whole night, just listening to Jungkook dish out all the gossip he knew about the other politicians and their families. Most of the stuff he told him was really so insane that Hoseok had to fight to keep his loud boisterous laughter from bubbling up and out of his throat for the sheer volume would most likely shock everyone in the general vicinity.

 

He had been too lost in the stories Jungkook was telling him that he didn't even notice when a tall man walks up to the both of them. As soon as he notices him, Hoseok immediately wants to punch himself in the face. He was so lucky he didn't jump or squeak or scream or something to let everyone know that he had been startled. How would that look? Hoseok, a bodyguard, being startled by someone sneaking up on them when it was his job to be aware of everything all the time. He had been caught off guard by the man approaching him and it made him realize that by conversing so deeply with Jungkook, he was forgoing his duties as a bodyguard and not paying attention to his surroundings. 

 

The guilt quickly subsides and is instead replaced by hosility. He didn't recognize who this man was who came up to them, but Jungkook obviously did. The boy beside him immediately freezes, and Hoseok realizes that whoever this was, Jungkook was not comfortable with him. Not in the slightest.

 

"Jungkook-ah," the voice soft comes, the name sounding wrong on the man's lips. Hoseok could feel his hackles raising.

 

Jungkook's arms reached up to cross across his chest, he turns his head to the side, like he wants to block his own view of this man as he just simply says, "Joohwan."

 

Hoseok looks back and forth between the two men besides him. Jungkook looked extremely uncomfortable, his jaw locking and unlocking unconsciously and his eyes shifting. This Joohwan, however, was looking at Jungkook like he was live bait. Hoseok didn't like it at all.

 

"Can I help you, sir?" Hoseok immediately pipes up, subconsciously stepping slightly in front of Jungkook, just enough to obscure his view from the man. 

 

Joohwan looked like he was just noticing Hoseok standing there and honestly, Hoseok was already irritated enough with this man but he was quickly starting to dislike this man even though he didn't even know him at all. He had a type of arrogance about him that rubbed him the wrong way. All he knew was that Jungkook obviously didn't want him here and Hoseok wasn't about to let the man come any closer.

 

Joohwan ignores him completely, turning his attention back to Jungkook who was avoiding his gaze, "Come on, Kook-ah, don't be like this. It's been almost two years now, surely we can talk about this civily."

 

He said it like it wasn't even an option for Jungkook not to want to talk to him. Where did this man get the gall?

 

That's it. It was time for Hoseok to step in, "I'm sorry, sir, but it seems that Jungkook doesn't wish to--"

 

"Hoseok, it's okay," Jungkook steps forward. His resolve looked deeper and he looked at this Joohwan with hard eyes, "I can handle this."

 

Hoseok looked back at the boy with insane wonder, "Jungkook, are you sure?"

 

The man narrows his eyes at him but Hoseok ignores him.

 

Jungkook nods, "Yeah, thank you, hyung." Jungkook's hand lingers on Hoseok's bicep before he turns to Joohwan.

 

"You have 5 minutes," Jungkook says, eyes hard and unforgiving yet still lenient, "Let's go to the terrace."

 

A million questions were floating around in Hoseok's mind, new ones popping up with each passing second. Who was this Joohwan guy? Who was he to Jungkook? Why did Jungkook look so uncomfortable around him? Why did the knowledge that the two were going to be alone together make something disgusting churn in Hoseok's stomach?

 

Hoseok eye twitched as he trailed behind the two men as they made their way to the balcony of the hotel. Jungkook was visibily standing a whole person's distance away from the man and with every passing second Hoseok began to feel more and more uneasy. Every instinct inside him was telling him that this man was bad news and that he shouldn't let him anywhere near Jungkook.

 

Joohwan opened the doors to the terrace and gestured for Jungkook to step through it. Hoseok was about to walk in after them but Joohwan stepped in front of him. "Actually, if you don't mind, I would like to speak to Jungkook in private."

 

Hoseok looks to Jungkook, not budging unless the younger said so. Yet seeing Jungkook nod stiffly, Hoseok still didn't feel right leaving the two alone. But nevertheless, he steps back anyway, letting Joohwan close the doors behind them and put a physical barrier between him and Jungkook.

 

Back in the hallway, he backs himself up, hitting the wall as he waited for the two to finish speaking. Hoseok really did not trust this guy. Something about him was off and judging by Jungkook's reaction to him, they had some sort of history. Hoseok pulls his phone out, typing in the name into the Naver search. It didn't take him long to figure out who he was.

 

Kim Joohwan: Eldest son of Kim Hoonju, Military General of South Korea, advisor to President Jeon Kyungmin.

 

So that's who this man was. The Military General's son. Someone who had plenty of opportunities to get close to Jungkook. Somehow knowing didn't exactly make Hoseok feel any better. Looking at his watch, he realizes that they had been talking for a little over five minutes now. It was too quiet and Hoseok knew that Jungkook didn't want to talk to this man for long regardless of what he said. Knowing how stubborn Jungkook was and how hostile this situation seemed to be, Hoseok strode forward, coming closer to the door. He fully intended to swing the door open and interrupt them, but something stops him. Maybe it was because Hoseok knew just how easily the actions of others affected Jungkook, or maybe it was because he was afraid of what he would find on the other side. Either way, the inconculsivity causes Hoseok to instead lean his ear against the door.

 

"Kook-ah, how many times do I have to say I'm sorry before you finally forgive me?" the muffled voice of this Joohwan man comes. Hoseok's brow furrows. Forgive him for what? What did this bastard do to Jungkook?!

 

"Don't call me that. As I've already told you before, that's not going to happen. I've heard all your excuses and everything you've had to say and it still doesn't change the fact that I don't want anything to do with you anymore. From now on, I would appreciate it if you don't try to contact me ever again. I'm leaving now." Jungkook's voice came, slightly unsteady but still stern with a resolve that would not be easy to break. 

 

That's right, Kookie, you tell him! Hoseok thinks to himself.

 

"Jungkook, wait a fucking minute--" The voice was hostile, not taking no for an answer.

 

Okay, enough was enough. Hoseok yanks the door open and was striding over to the pair as quickly as his two feet could carry him. He seizes the man's wrist, currently wrapped around Jungkook's tightly with no intent of letting him go.

 

"Hyung--"

 

"What the fuck--" the man spits.

 

Hoseok yanks the man's hands off Jungkook and steps directly in between them, arms up and out, putting as much distance as possible in between them, this time blocking the man's access to Jungkook entirely. "You do not lay your hands on him, you understand? I don't care who you are, if you touch him again without his permission, I will hurt you."

 

Hoseok didn't exactly know where the venom in his voice was coming from, but his vision was still red and he was ready to strike at the man with his posionous bite should he make one more move towards Jungkook. 

 

The man looks surprised and infuriated at the same time. Hoseok jutted his chin out, just daring the guy to do something. He almost wanted him to say something, and just watch what would happen to him. Joohwan breathes out of his nose with a barely constrained huff.

 

"Enjoy your life being shackled to your cage, Jungkook," he scoffs, spitting angry barbs aimed straight at Jungkook's most vulnerable nerve. "Good luck finding anybody who will put up with your ungrateful ass."

 

Hoseok almost launches himself at the asshole, but Jungkook's hand shoots out and stops him from propelling himself forward. The man looks over his shoulder at Jungkook one last time before he turns and walks out the doors back into the hotel to rejoin the party, his footsteps heavily stomping against the ground. Hoseok didn't lower his guard until the doors were shut firmly, cutting off the two of them from everyone else. Hoseok was still silently fuming, glaring daggers at the closed doors.

 

"Hoseok?" a breathy voice comes from behind him. Hoseok feels the tension slip out of his spine and turns around to face Jungkook. Taking in the younger's stock still shocked face, Hoseok let's out a sigh.

 

"Shit, Jungkook, I'm sorry," he apologizes, not sure where the need to was coming from, but not trying to stop himself. "I don't know why I did that, I just--"

 

Why was Hoseok freaking out about this? It was his job to protect Jungkook, wasn't it? He shouldn't have to apologize for doing his job, and yet he found himself increasingly worried that what he had done had upset the younger boy in some way.

 

"Hoseok." Jungkook's hand that had been resting on his lower arm comes up to his shoulder and Hoseok's eyes snap to it, the warmth seeping past his clothes and into his skin. The sensation was calming and yet Hoseok found his pulse picking up. "It's okay."

 

"I'm really sorry, Jungkoookie," the name coming out without Hoseok realizing. He couldn't help but feel like he had crossed some sort of line.

 

Jungkook actually lets out a little chuckle, "Hyung, I'm not mad."

 

"Really?" Hoseok asks. Jungkook moves to sit down on the bench on the balcony terrace. Hoseok doesn't know if he should join him or just stay standing. He just decides to stay put. 

 

Jungkook rubs his hands together and then down his knees, "Yeah, that was just--...I just didn't expect to see him ever again."

 

Hoseok really didn't want to touch a nerve in the younger, but he was too curious, "Who...who was that?"

 

"The Military General's son," Jungkook tells him. The evening air was starting to get cold now that the sun was down, wind blowing in his hair and making the loose pieces move from his forehead and into his eyes. Hoseok swipes them back along his skin until they don't bother him anymore. 

 

He rolls his eyes, "I know that. What I mean is, who is he to you?"

 

Hoseok didn't know why he found himself waiting on bated breath for the younger to answer. With each passing second, the night sky seemed to cast shadows along the youngers face that made his expression look darker and darker.

 

"He was just...someone who I used to know. We kind of...had a thing." Jungkook's fingers were twitching. He was sucking in his bottom lip and chewing on it with all of his might, making Hoseok wonder if he was going to bite it so hard that he would draw blood.

 

"A...thing?" Hoseok repeated, still confused. Did Jungkook mean what he thought he meant?

 

"We...well, he's...," it looked extremely hard for Jungkook to actually come out and say the words. His breath was shallow, a stuttering mess and his eyes were looking anywhere but in Hoseok's direction."He's kinda...my ex-boyfriend."

 

Oh.

 

...Oh.

 

Hoseok's jaw unhinges itself from his face and flings itself over the side of the balcony to free fall down ten stories to the ground below and smash against the ground. "Oh..."

 

"Yeah..." Jungkook was avoiding his gaze, almost looking like he was trying to shrink down, make himself as small as physically possible, "A couple of years ago....he was over at the Blue House a lot, his father had a lot of business to attend to during that time seeing as North Korea was doing a lot of missle testing. W-We would hang out together most of the time and eventually we just kind of....y-yeah..."

 

Hoseok nodded along, slightly numb like the cold prickling wind poking at his skin, except that it was summertime and the wind was anything but cold. Maybe it was just his own body temperature that plummeted like his throat had into his stomach. Maybe he would throw himself over the ledge of the building to join his jaw that had fallen not too long ago.

 

"Why..." Hoseok mentally slapped himself for not being able to stop himself from continuing to ask questions, "I mean, how...I mean, never mind. You don't have to tell me. That's personal and you don't have to tell me anything. I'll just--"

 

Jungkook looks up, seemingly looking a little anxious but maybe also a little relieved? Like he was glad Hoseok hadn't immediately freaked out. He wraps his palm around Hoseok's wrist, pulling him down to sit right beside him on the bench. Hoseok's ass hits the bench with a plop and he coughs awkwardly, finding himself leaning away from the heat of Jungkook's shoulder touching his own.

 

"It's fine," Jungkook tells him, voice more reassured, "I've never actually told anybody this...Jimin and Taehyung know some details but I didn't even tell them that much."

 

A funny tingling sensation started up in Hoseok's toes and spreads up his legs. He quickly shakes his foot to get rid of it, but it lingers nonetheless.

 

"I wasn't exactly able to go out that often," Jungkook starts, a bitter laugh on his lips. His hands were spread out on top of his thighs, contracting then releasing, "As you know, I had a bunch of asshole bodyguards who wouldn't let me leave the house most of the time. I could only see him when he came to my house and because of that, I only saw him every now and then. Once a month at best. The rest was just...texting and stuff."

 

"Sounds difficult," Hoseok comments. Jesus, why did he always say awkward things at wrong times?

 

Jungkook doesn't seem to think it was awkward as he just nods beside him, "It was. At the time, I hadn't had much experience with friends at all, let alone, you know...relationships and stuff..."

 

Suddenly an upsetting thought comes to Hoseok's mind. Please don't tell him that this guy had...?

 

Nope. Nope, nope, nope Hoseok was not about to start thinking about that. Oho, no, that was dangerous.

 

"I had a few friendships with a few of the other children of officials who came over to the house for extended stays sometimes. That was how I found out." Jungkook says, his leg starting to bounce with anxiety, "You'd be surprised how much the children of other politicians get around. Like parent like child, am I right? Scandals run in our blood."

 

Hoseok was quiet. He felt heavy, like his entire body was made of lead but at the same time his head felt it was filling with hot air and he would surely float away into the air.

 

"I should've known that I wouldn't be enough," Jungkook says quietly, a wobble unmasking the vulnerability, "How could I be when I'm not even enough for--" when he wasn't even enough for his family to acknowledge him. Jungkook didn't finish the sentence, but the implications were obvious.

 

Hoseok leaned his shoulder into Jungkook's, the dual heat being soaked into each other and letting the other know that they were there. Not alone. He lets the boy continue without saying anything further.

 

"I tried to break it off with him, but as you saw he didn't exactly want me to have any say whatsoever. He doesn't know that I'm not the President's nephew but he knows that I live with them and that I have to follow their strict rules," Jungkook says. "He still can't accept it apparently, even after two years. To be honest, I had almost forgotten about him. It took me nearly a year, but I realized how much of a shit person he was and I was grateful to be out of it. I had attached myself to him because I was fucking naive and he had pretended to see me beyond just a pathetic kid forced to stay home all day."

 

Hoseok let out a little laugh, feeling somewhat...proud of Jungkook. He was a lot more mature than what people gave him credit for. Hoseok himself was just only starting to see this. Maybe he should have noticed earlier, but he knew that he would for sure take note of it from now on.

 

Hoseok still wasn't saying anything and he didn't notice Jungkook starting to fidgit anxiously next to him.

 

He turns to him, "What's wrong?"

 

Jungkook's head was looking down and for a moment, the shy bunny was back and Hoseok wondered what brought on the sudden change.

 

"Hyung," Not even the rare name calmed the concern in Hoseok's chest, "...you're not...disgusted, right?"

 

Hoseok jerks, shocked out of his mind, "What? Disgusted? Jungkook, what makes you think I would be disgusted? Where did you even--?"

 

Jungkook seemed to relax slightly but he still looked a bit worried, "I don't know, I just...like I said before I never really told anybody that...nobody else besides you knows that I'm...into guys..except maybe Jimin and Taehyung if they managed to read between the lines."

 

Oh. So that's what this was about. 

 

Hoseok's hand comes up to run his hand over the top of Jungkook's head without permission, "Ah, Jungkookie, that's one thing you don't have to worry about with me. I could never find you disgusting because of that. Besides, that would be kind of hypocritical seeing that two of my closest friends are in a gay relationship and I've had boyfriends in the past as well."

 

Jungkook's head snaps up, the redness of embarrasment gone but replaced with an equal look of shock. "You're....you're...--too?"

 

"I'm actually bisexual, but yeah," Hoseok tells him, running a hand through his own hair. Man, it had been a long ass time since he talked to someone about his sexuality or his past realtionships. Yoongi, Jimin and Seokjin knew better than to ask him about them. They knew why Hoseok didn't talk about them. "I've had my fair share of ex's cheat on me too."

 

More than his fair share actually...but then again, when was cheating ever fair? He almost chuckles. That's because cheating was never fair. How many times had he found out about them and let them shatter him completely? To many times to count. He lets out a noise before saying,"You're not alone, Jungkook."

 

The younger nods his head, trying to hide a relieved smile in the collar of his shirt. Hoseok couldn't help but smile at the cute younger man.

 

Then he gets an idea. This atomsphere was too tense. Hoseok didn't want to talk about stupid fucking ex's anymore. He knew from personal experience that dwelling on it for too long would just hurt more in the end. He reaches forward and tugs Jungkook up, "Come on. Let's go."

 

"Where are we going?" Jungkook asks, surprised by the sudden action but not putting up any sort of fight. Hoseok takes that as a good sign.

 

He turns back to Jungkook with a mischeivous glint in his eye, "You think you still got those ninja sneaking off skills?"

 

Jungkook's eyebrows raise with realization. Then any sort of apprehension Jungkook may have been housing in his expression the entire night completely slips away and a blindingly white smile breaks out over his face as a loud laugh exits his shapely lips.

 

**************

 

"How did you know there was a fucking pool on the roof?!" Jungkook screeches excitedly. He runs forward, stopping in the middle of the floor.

 

"I didn't!" Hoseok laughs back, the echo of his voice bouncing off the walls of the roof, "I thought it would be just a regular roof!"

 

"There's a mini bar!" Jungkook calls, having run off to the mini bar set up by the side of the pool. The roof wasn't really a complete open roof. They were on the very top of the building, but there was a little side room to the other end covered by a wall that was a part of the building. When they made it up here they looked and saw that no one was actually up here. Off to the other side there was a complete small bar set up, with stools and everything and a small fridge behind it. The rest of the roof was covered with a massive pool, water sparkling with the baby blue of the pool lights and twinkled with the light of the stars up above their heads.

 

"Okay, okay, let's calm down now," Hoseok tells him, holding his hands out in front of him. He walks to the bar where Jungkook had already walked around to the other side of the bar to check out the alcohol assortment. 

 

Jungkook snorts, backing off to sit down on the barstools instead, "Ooooh, and here I thought with you becoming my bodyguard you'd have gone soft."

 

Hoseok narrows his eyes at him. He then moves behind the bar and opens the fridge. He pulls out two beers and snaps the lids off both of them. He hands one to Jungkook, "Why is it that I am always giving you alcohol? I'm such a bad influence."

 

"I am old enough to drink, you know," Jungkook murmurs between sips, his lips lingering on the bottle a little bit too long. Hoseok was watching his face closely and somehow Jungkook liked the way his eyes lingered on his face. It made a nice heat curl up in his stomach and his toes.

 

"I know, I know," Hoseok laughs, snapping Jungkook out of it and coming out from behind the bar but not taking a seat at the bar like Jungkook, "I'm just kidding."

 

Jungkook hums around the head of the botle, gazing downwards at Hoseok. Somehow he was okay with Hoseok joking around with his age. He just knew that Hoseok wasn't going to actually hold it over him. Jungkook felt he could trust Hoseok, and the man had yet to let him down yet in the three going on four months that they had worked together.

 

He looks up when Hoseok suddenly laughs loudly. Jungkook looks to his face, the lights from the pool bouncing off his face like a prism and making his face look like diamond. It brought out every soft angle of Hoseok's face, bursting with mesmerizing color.

 

"What's so funny?" Jungkook asks, already starting to feel the buzz spread from his stomach to his chest.

 

Hoseok laughs again, brilliant white teeth hiding behind heart shaped lips, "Nothing."

 

"No, what?" Jungkook asks, he really did not want to play this game with Hoseok. He never was a patient person, he wanted to know why Hoseok was laughing right this instant. He wanted to know what made him laugh so that he could do it again and maybe get to hear his laugh filling his ears again.

 

"I was just wondering what kind of drunk you'd be," Hoseok laughs again, bringing his hand up to cover his mouth, gazing at him, "I've seen you drink but I've never seen you drunk."

 

Jungkook couldn't help but let a manly giggle escape his lips, taking another suctiony sip at his beer, before he gets a wicked idea, "I'm the really touchy feely kind."

 

Hoseok nearly falls to the ground, smacking his legs as he laughs without caution. Jungkook opened his mouth in a wide smile, he loved it when Hoseok lost his shit like this, nearly toppling over as he laughed. He looked so free; felt everything as strongly as he wanted. Unrestrained and as wild as Hoseok himself. Jungkook wanted that...to be like that, he meant.

 

"No way, I don't believe you!" Hoseok continues to laugh, eyes scrunching up in delight and chest heaving with the strong bursts of laughter and air taking turns escaping his throat.

 

Jungkook stands up off his chair, "It's true! I wouldn't lie about that."

 

"I kinda wanna see that," Hoseok admits, his inhibitions obviously starting to slip away, as were Jungkook's. 

 

Hoseok wanted to see that? A curl of something electric stirs inside him.

 

"You never will," Jungkook tells him as he takes a step forward.

 

"Aw, why not?" Hoseok pouts, full mouth moving to push his cheeks out, making the normally skinny face seem almost puffy, "Don't you love me?"

 

Ignoring Hoseok's last statement, Jungkook continues to move closer, enjoying the way each step forward makes Hoseok's face morph into a different expression.  "Are you trying to get me drunk?"

 

"No, I just want confirmation that if you ever get drunk in the future, that I get to see it," Hoseok argues, taking yet another slow step backwards, towards the pool.

 

"Why?" Jungkook asks, a cheeky lift in his voice. He could feel his courage rising (thanks, liquid courage) and boy did he live for Hoseok's reactions. Jungkook enjoyed illiciting reactions out of Hoseok almost as much as he liked playing with him. His mouth was working faster than his brain, moving on instinct and gut feeling rather than any sort of thought or logic,"You want me to get all touchy feely with you?"

 

"What?" Hoseok splutters. In Jungkook's foggy mind he couldn't help but think about how cute Hoseok was when he got flustered. His nose did this funny flaring thing and he always brought out this really funny face that made Jungkook feel something he could only akin to fondness, "N-No--"

 

"You want me to feel you up, huh?" Jungkook smirks, walking closer yet again. He brings his hand up to take another sip of his beer, when he realizes he left it back at the bar. Hoseok's was still in his hand so Jungkook snatches it out of his hand, damning the consequences and takes a drink from it, ignoring Hoseok's cute noise of protest.

 

"Were you always such a pervert?" Hoseok asks, slightly miffed but mostly amused. It was a running gag now. Everytime Jungkook said something greasy, Hoseok would ask if he was always a pervert. It was a fun back and forth. Every time Jungkook would say something even more greasy. It was beginning to become a challenge for him, how much more he could fluster the older man. It was fun and Jungkook lived for games.

 

"Well, I am a man after all," Jungkook doesn't realize when his voice suddenly starts to morph from playful teasing into straight up flirting. He just kept walking towards Hoseok, the space between them slowly lessening to the point where Hoseok was less than a few inches in front of him looking genuinely terrified, "And men have nee--"

 

He hadn't realized that Hoseok had been taking steps back with every step forward Jungkook took. So when Hoseok suddenly lets out a shriek, Jungkook almost doesn't realize what's happened.

 

Hoseok slips out of Jungkook's view and before Jungkook can even react, Hoseok's landing in the water with a loud splash!

 

Jungkook drops the beer bottle, hearing it hit the floor with a clank as he covers his mouth with both hands in shock. Holy shit.

 

"Shit!" Jungkook's mouth actually manages to recieve the message from his brain, telling him to apologize, "Hoseok, I'm so sorry!"

 

Hoseok pops out of the water with a gasp of breath, shaking his head to get the water out of his eyes. He was drenched. His somewhat long hair had become completely flat against his face and the water had completely soaked into every crevice of his clothes, "Jungkook, you asshole!"

 

Jungkook couldn't help the giggles that burst out of his throat. He had completely lost control over his legs, his feet slipping out from under his feet as his ass bounces onto the concrete by the side of the pool.  It kinda hurt but the pain in his ass was nothing compared to the pain in his ribs from trying and failing to hold his laughter in.

 

"Hoseok--hyung--ahaha," Jungkook tries to get back up, and fails yet, his legs not working, "You look so--fuh-fucking funny. Your hair, oh my god!"

 

Hoseok had tried to use his hands to move the hair out of his face and as a result it had been completely messed up, sticking out at all angles. 

 

"You did that on purpose!" Hoseok screams.

 

Jungkook chokes through his giggles, "I swear--I didn't, I swear!"

 

Jungkook had managed to get back up onto his feet, with him still in a squat, with his hands pressed against the wet concrete right above the edge of the pool. His stomach contracts with the force of the laughter coming out of his mouth. Tears were streaming down his face, he was laughing so hard.

 

"Hyung, you--"

 

Taking advantage of the time that Jungkook was busy trying to get up off the ground, Hoseok had sneaked up on him. He jumps up, grabbing ahold of Jungkook shoulders and pulls him straight into the pool along with him. 

 

Jungkook's scream of shock is muffled as his entire body is dunked under the water. There was water in his ears and rushing past his nostrils and he was lucky not to breathe the water in. The water was warm but it did nothing to stop the shock of the coolness hitting his skin and soaking him to the bone. When he pops back up, Hoseok was the one now dying with laughter.

 

"Hyung!" Jungkook screams, slapping his arms down against the water, causing water to fly like he was a god damn water bender, "Why'd you do that?!"

 

"I wasn't about to play in the pool by myself!" Hoseok screeches back, coming closer and splashing Jungkook straight in the face.

 

Oh no he did not.

 

"You think this is a motherfucking game?!" Jungkook plants his feet firmly on the bottom of the pool, standing up as straight as he could, "You are so dead!"

 

Hoseok's face was stock still for a moment before he mutters out a quiet, "Fuck me." and then proceeds to scream his head off as he launches himself in the other direction. Jungkook lunges just as soon as Hoseok does, the older trying his best to swim to the other side of the pool as fast as he could. 

 

Hoseok scrambles to swim as fast as he could away from him. "Hooooooooosseeeeeoookkk!!!"

 

Hoseok just screams in return, "Jungkookieee, mercy please! I'm sorry!"

 

"Fuck no, you're not!" The bastard was gonna die in Jungkook's arms tonight. He was going to murder him. With fun. Because he was an angel. Not.

 

"I'm--!" Hoseok's banshee protests are muffled as he trips over his feet and face plants straight into the water.

 

"HUHAH!!" Just as Hoseok pops back up out of the water, Jungkook lets out a war cry of victory as he flings himself at the smaller man. His entire body collides with Hoseok's back, causing the both of them to dunk straight back into the water. Jungkook opens his eyes under the water and watches as Hoseok struggles to get up. Jungkook lets up the tiniest bit as Hoseok surges back up above the water.

 

Hoseok jumps onto him, "AURRRGGHHH~"

 

Jungkook's arms wrap around Hoseok's midsection as the older throws all his weight on top of him in attempt to throw him back into the water. It wouldn't have worked if Jungkook's foot hadn't have slipped. It was the damn slippery dress shoes. Back into the water they tumble until Hoseok hooks his legs around Jungkook's waist and Jungkook picks them both up out of the water.

 

"HYUNGGG!" Jungkook yells, trying to flip him off him and back into the water. 

 

"YOU PUSHED ME IN FIRST!" Hoseok clings to him, flipping his hair out of his eyes, his body twisting and turning as he tries to push Jungkook into the water.

 

"YOU FELLL IN!" Jungkook's hands were everywhere, fighting back with all the strength he could. He hooks his hands under Hoseok's thighs, their clothes clinging to their bodies and yet flowing in the water slugishly and causing their moves to come out stifled.

 

"BECAUSE YOU BACKED ME INTO IT!" Hoseok screams right into his ear, so close Jungkook could feel the breath on his cheek.

 

Hoseok uses his feet to kick off Jungkook's thighs and manages to make himself shoot off like a torpedo across the pool.

 

"YOU--!" Jungkook jumps into action, hating the fact that Hoseok had managed to make him falter. He jumps into action, running as fast as he could with the water holding him back in order to grab ahold of Hoseok. When he reaches him, they both fall into the water with another scream and together they roll under the water. Neither of them come up for air just yet, deciding instead to swim around each other with large smiles on their faces. Every time Jungkook tries to get closer to Hoseok under the water, the older man kicks out at him but it doesn't do anything to stop him. He manages to get close enough to hug the older man under the water before popping back up for air.

 

Jungkook scoops Hoseok up, forcing him foward until they were right in front of each other before placing him upright.

 

Hoseok was laughing and coughing, water dripping from his face in dazzling droplets, smile wide and unabashed. Jungkook laughed along with him, trying to catch his breath just as Hoseok was. They stood there together for a while, arms moving to keep them afloat whilst their legs bent and hovered just above the floor. 

 

Jungkook giggled, reaching up to mess with Hoseok's hair, "You look like a unicorn."

 

"The fuck do you mean I look like a horse?" Hoseok asks, words displaying offence but his face and tone betraying the concept and instead showing Jungkook that he was just as amused as he was.

 

"Maybe," Jungkook says, sucking his lips in between his teeth, feeling the water drip down his own face and into his mouth slightly. It didn't really do anything to combat the dryness that was suddenly Jungkook's throat.

 

"Your hair doesn't look any better," Hoseok laughs softly, hand reaching up to run his finger through one particularly messed up section of hair on Jungkook's head before tucking it back in place and letting his hand fall as his eyes move over Jungkook's face. He was still struggling to catch his breath, "But hey, now you really are that piece of soggy toast."

 

Jungkook laughs again, smile still wide as Hoseok smiles back at him, without saying anything else. Without the echoes of their laughter and constant noises, the air starts to go quiet. The only sounds that Jungkook could hear was the sound of water and blood rushing in his ears and the pants coming from all around him.

 

A moment goes by where Jungkook felt like he was standing on the precipice of an infinity pool--on the edge of a waterfall and his heart was beating so fast that he was pretty sure at any moment a particullarly heavy thump of his heart was going to send him falling over the edge until he eventually hit the water with a lethal smack. Jungkook's head had felt a lot clearer upon entering the water, sobering him up rather fast, and yet still standing here under Hoseok's intense gaze, Jungkook felt drunk again. 

 

"We should--"

 

"Yeah." Jungkook agrees. Not knowing what at all he was agreeing to, all he knew was that he wanted to do something. Needed to do something, but he didn't know what. His head felt oddly empty and instead filled up to the brim with soaking wet cotton balls.

 

"Get out."

 

"Oh." Why did Jungkook feels so disappointed? He kinda wanted to stay in the pool. With Hoseok. 

 

"Yeah," Hoseok breathes.

 

"Okay." He has noice other choice but to say.

 

"Okay."

 

They still stood still in the water, neither one of them moving. The night air was warm and the water sticking to their skin cooled them off, yet the heat of their skin and their breaths caused it to evaporate.

 

Jungkook studies Hoseok's face, it's angle and curves. He wasn't handsome in a conventional sense, but still attractive in a unique way in which his eyes curved and his dimples made an appearance every time his cheeks turned up. It brought about a softness to his face. A beauty that Jungkook had a hard time describing adequately. He almost felt like it wasn't possibly to explain how pretty Hoseok was.

 

But then Hoseok moves out of sight and the spell seems to break. He pulls himself out of the pool and reaches his hand down to help Jungkook out. Jungkook has a moment where he almost wants to pull Hoseok back into the water--back closer to him--but istead takes a hold of his outstretched hand and pulls himself out, all the water dropping onto the floor in wet splashes. Hoseok walks to the other side of the pool area, his shoes squeaking with water, and grabs two large towels.

 

He unravels one before pulling it over Jungkook's shoulders. Only then does Jungkook realize he was shivering. Hoseok runs his hands down Jungkook's shoulders in an attempt to warm him up and Jungkook notices that Hoseok has yet to put his own towel on.

 

Jungkook takes the towel from Hoseok's hand and does the exact same thing for Hoseok. He unravels it and throws it over the shorter man's shoulders, before using his hands to create friction and heat on the towel to warm him up.

 

Hoseok gives him a quirked smile, seemingly touched but trying to keep it subdued before saying, "Thank you, Jungkookie."

 

Jungkook was feeling too mesmerized to say anything about the nickname. He didn't care what Hoseok called him anymore. Jungkook could say nothing other than, "You're welcome, hyung."

 

Hoseok grabs ahold of his hand and pulls him away from the side of the pool, "Come on, let's go get changed."

 

Jungkook knew as soon as Hoseok's warm yet clammy hand wrapped around his and they left the pool area behind that something in him had definitely changed. 

 

 

*************************

 

Hoseok had gotten a card to a suite pretty easily. All he had to do was message Blue House security who in turn got in touch with the hotel and delivered to them a keycard up to the pool area. They traveled down to the hotel suite as Hoseok informed staff that they would only be using the suite to get cleaned and changed. They had some time seeing as Hoseok had been told not to try to leave the hotel until all the rest of the guests had left the gala. That way no one would see them leave in casual clothes. Hoseok thought it was a bit much, but he went with it, seeing as he had no better options.

 

"You should take a shower first okay?" Hoseok instructs Jungkook, "While you shower, I'll get our clothes sent to the hotel cleaners and have them get sent back to us."

 

Jungkook nods, still shivering slightly, so Hoseok rubs his hands up and down on his shoulders again. Jungkook stops shivering immediately and looks Hoseok straight in the eyes. Hoseok, taken aback by the sudden heat in Jungkook's eyes, drops his hands, coughing under his breath.

 

"Uh, yeah, I'll go take that shower," Jungkook says, moving to the bathroom. After a few moments, the door opens again and Jungkook was in a bathrobe as he sets his wet clothes out for the staff to take. He goes back in and locks the door. Hoseok doesn't consider it safe until he hears the water start. It is only then that he strips his own clothes off and grabs the other robe, throwing it over himself. 

 

In the meantime, Hoseok waits for the hotel to deliver the temporary clothes for them to wear. He thanks his lucky stars that he hadn't had his phone on him when he fell in the water and neither had Jungkook. That could have posed a problem.

 

Hoseok honestly couldn't believe that Jungkook had pushed him in the pool. Okay, maybe he hadn't pushed him in the pool, but he might as well have. Jungkook kept saying these...words to him and Hoseok hated that it had actually gotten to his head. Jungkook had kept taking steps forward and Hoseok was so flustered and the alcohol wasn't helping in the slightest. He wasn't paying attention to where his feet were stepping and before he knew it, he had been on the edge of the pool, with his foot sliding off the side and falling in. 

 

He didn't know what inside him possesed him to pull Jungkook in too, but he had and there was no taking that back. 

 

It had been fun for a hot minute, before the atmosphere suddenly changed. Something on Jungkook's face suddenly made that dull funny feeling in Hoseok's stomach that had previously been dormant blossom and Hoseok wasn't sure what to do with himself anymore. He was suddenly extremely aware of where his hands were and how close they were to each other. Less than a pencil's length distance in between them.

 

He hadn't even noticed the coolness of the water on his skin, his body was suddenly cranking up the temperature and making Hoseok feel lightheaded.

 

He was happy to be back in the hotel room, with Jungkook in another room from him. Even if it was the bathroom, which wasn't exactly helping with the uncomfortably tense feeling in the pit of his stomach, like a rock lodged inside him and backing everything up. There was a knock at the door.

 

Hoseok gets up to answer, recieving the clean clothes from the bellhop and then walking back into the room. Figuring he probably wouldn't have any time to shower, Hoseok just decides to get dressed in his clean clothes and put off taking a shower until later. He dries his hair with one of the leftover towels and moves over to the mirror, getting a good look at face. Falling in the water had caused all the product he had put on his face to slip off, and he looked a bit washed out. 

 

He sighed, there wasn't much he could do about his appearance at this moment. It was already late in the evening and as soon as he got Jungkook back to the Blue House safe and sound, he would be going home to sleep anyway. He could hold out for a little while longer.

 

He hears the sound of a door opening, "Hoseok, are the dry clothes here?"

 

Hoseok turns around and walks over to the beside drawer, picking up the pile of clothes and moving to hand them to Jungkook. "Thanks."

 

"No problem."

 

Hoseok goes to sit back down on the bed. Jungkook was standing in his bathroom, hair freshly washed and face clear of the makeup that had been slightly running when they had been in the pool. He picks up his phone when a text message chimes. 

 

It was just Yoongi, texting him to ask if Jimin was still at work, to which Hoseok replies that he doesn't know seeing as he wasn't at the Blue House right now. When he looks back up, his eyes widen.

 

Jungkook was standing in the middle of the room, half naked with only his pants on but his chest was completely bare.

 

Hoseok's mouth goes dry as he takes in the sight before him. He knows that he should look away but his eyes are glued to the upper half of Jungkook's body, unable to even think. Hoseok's head goes fuzzy as his eyes trail from Jungkook's toned stomach up to his pectorals where his eyes get caught on something unusual.

 

Was that....a tattoo?

 

Hoseok wasn't sure if the reason his mouth had fallen open was because of the surprise of seeing the ink or because he was lacking oxygen to his brain for another reason entirely. Hoseok's eyes lock onto the tattoo. It was a red flower with a large stem that started from the center of Jungkook's left pecotral and traveled up. Instead of a stem, there were barbed wire around the simple petals that bloomed from within the barbed wires and twisted until it turned into an array of feathers flying away, like a dandelion in the wind.

 

Hoseok hadn't realized how lost he had gotten in staring at Jungkook's chest and his tattoo, until the younger crosses his arms over his chest, his biceps curling. He clears his throat and Hoseok's eyes snap up to his, only to see the younger with a sly smile on his face. Hoseok sucks in a breath. Oh, shit. He got caught.

 

"Whatcha lookin' at, hyung?" he winks, looking down as if to assess his own body. 

 

Okay, no. Hoseok was not going to put up with this. He reaches back and grabs the pillow on the bed and flings it at Jungkook. "Put a god damn shirt on, you ass!"

 

Jungkook laughs jubilously, depsite being smacked right in the face with a pillow. He bends over and picks up the plain white shirt, throwing it over his head and pulling it down over his chest. Hoseok hates the fact that even though Jungkook had already put a shirt on, he still felt light headed because his breath wasn't evening out.

 

"Are you gonna take a shower?" Jungkook asks. Hoseok shakes his head, telling him that he was going to do it at home later. Jungkook nods, accpeting the answer. "Do you know when we can go back?" 

 

Hoseok looks down at the clock on his phone. "The guests should have all cleared out by now but I'm not sure. I'll message the rest of security and see if we can go sooner."

 

Jungkook nods, taking a seat on the couch opposite Hoseok. Once Hoseok sends the message he sits back and takes in Jungkook image again. 

 

He narrows his eyes, deciding to suck it up and just ask the younger. It couldn't do any harm right?  "When'd you get a tattoo?"

 

Jungkook actually has the nerve to look sheepish. It's fucking cute and Hoseok wants to smack himself in the face. "Ah, you saw that?"

 

"Was kinda hard to miss."

 

Jungkook bites his lower lip, making Hoseok sniff awkwardly and turn away to avoid the bubbling need in his stomach that made him want to cuddle the boy's face. "I got it maybe...9 months or so ago."

 

Hoseok raises an eyebrow, "Really? That recently?"

 

Jungkook nods, "One Friday afternoon once I escaped my braindead bodyguard."

 

Hoseok couldn't help but snort at this, because of course that's when Jungkook got a tattoo. Forever the rebel. Hoseok briefly wondered what his mother would think if she knew Jungkook had gotten one. "What's with the barbed wire and the flower feathers?"

 

Jungkook's hand comes up unconsciously to rub against the ink covered by his shirt. His eyes shift to the corner, slightly downcast. "Ah...it's kind of lame..."

 

Hoseok shakes his head, "Nothing is ever lame if it holds meaning to you. As long as it means something to you, that's all that counts."

 

Jungkook gives him a grateful look and Hoseok tries to not let himself get sucked in too deep into dark wide eyes. It was proving to be difficult and that scared him in a way that he had never experienced fear before.

 

"You know when I was younger I wanted to be a tattoo artist?" Jungkook asks. No, Hoseok did not know this. "Yeah, until I realized I wasn't that good at drawing. But I guess, I still really liked how art has the ability to comfort people...or even the opposite sometimes. For me, even though I've grown to really appreciate the art of written word, I've found that what I really wanted branded on me for the rest of my life was an image of what it was like for me to grow up and live the way I've been living for too long now."

 

Hoseok stayed quiet listening to the explantions, feeling the ache in Jungkook's voice wafting through the air towards him. Hoseok watches as Jungkook speaks, his face softening and eyes seemingly glistening under the light of the lamps.

 

"So whenever I see this," Jungkook taps the area above his heart, "I'll be reminded of where I am and how it won't always be this way. It'll change...someday...I hope."

 

Hoseok hadn't really known how much these years being stifled and denied by his family had affected the younger. The younger had done his best to live with it and endure, but now Hoseok realizes that he'd endured a lot more hardships than he'd previously given him credit for.
 

"I like it," Hoseok finds is the only thing he can say at the moment. His voice was earnest and truthful, trying to convey to the boy that he really didn't think it was lame or stupid that the tattoo meant so much to him. "It's beautiful."

 

Jungkook smiles sincerely at him, silently thanking him with his eyes. Hoseok lets his eyes linger a little longer on Jungkook's face, quiet and subdued within the moment. Jungkook was a strong person, Hoseok thinks, not many people could have endured the same way he had and still found the strength to find the best of a horrible situation. Hoseok found himself starting to resent Jungkook's family. He didn't understand why they refused to acknowledge Jungkook as their son. Why Jungkook, when their older son was almost in as much limelight as his father?

 

Why was Jungkook left alone and left to deal with everything on his own? Why was this kind of pain--sharp like a bullet and yet still burning like the dull blade used to carve it out--inflicted on Jungkook? Why was Hoseok suddenly thrust into this life of trying to protect this boy? And why did Hoseok want to to protect Jungkook's heart more than anything else? 

 

Hoseok was so confused and the more he thought about the boy in front of him, the less decipherable his thoughts became.

 

*******************

 

 

"Hey, Hoseok!" a high voice called out to him from across the hallway, "Wait up."

 

Hoseok stopped, turning around to watch as Hwasa strolled up to him, "Hey!"

 

"Hey," Hoseok said to her in greeting, a smile on his face, "What brings you here?" 

 

It had been several weeks since the gala and, for the most part, work had gone back to normal. Hoseok was still accompaning Jungkook to his lessons and escorting him everywhere else. It almost seemed like that tense night between them had been forgotten. Now, Hoseok just hung with Jungkook like normal, the two of them going back to their regular schedule of eating lunch with Jimin, Taehyung, Hwasa and Byulyi.

 

He had seen Hwasa earlier that day so he didn't know why she was seeking him out again now.

 

"Did you get Jimin's text?" she asks, voice lifting with the question. "About tonight?"

 

Hoseok furrows his brow in confusion. He hadn't gotten any text message. He pulls his phone out.

 

1 unread message

 

Oh. Well, there it was.

 

Hey, hyung! Wanna come out to the bar tonight with Taehyung, Hwasa, Byulyi and I? 

 

"You guys are going out tonight?" Hoseok asks. Hwasa nods, a pep in her step. 

 

"We were thinking of getting dinner and hitting up a few bars for a couple of rounds. You know, like a company dinner except without all the suits and well, only the four of us," she explains with a smile, "So? You in?"

 

Hoseok thinks about his plans tonight. He had agreed to join Jungkook for dinner and then go home once he was aloud to officially clock out, which was several hours after the regular agents like Hwasa and Jimin were allowed to clock out. If he agreed to meet them tonight, he would end up joining them much later, and it would be most likely that they would all be extremely drunk and a lot more out of their minds than Hoseok would be. He would have to chug an entire keg down in order to catch up with them. Not to mention, he was more likely to get a massive hangover the next morning, and to be honest, Hoseok really didn't want to have to deal with that and have to deal with the usual morning routine of dragging Jungkook out of bed by his toenails.

 

"I don't think I can," Hoseok tells her honestly, "I'm having dinner with Jungkook tonight and I can't officially clock out until much later than you guys."

 

"Oh." Hwasa says, face falling slightly, "Oh! I have an idea! Let me give Jimin a call and put him on speaker."

 

"Uh, okay?" Hoseok agrees, even though he doesn't see where she was going with this. What would calling Jimin up do?

 

She dials Jimin up soon enough and in no time that light voice was flittering through the air, "Hello?"

 

"Hey, Jimin, it's Hwasa," she announces.

 

"And Hoseok." Thanks so much for announcing his presence.

 

"Oh, hey guys!" Jimin's electronic voice comes through, "What's up?"

 

"Hoseok says he can't come out with us tonight because he's gotta stay with Jungkook," Hwasa explains, "So I was thinking, if it was okay with everyone, why don't we just bring the party here!"

 

"What's that supposed to mean?" Hoseok asks, confused. "We can't exactly bar hop in the Blue House."

 

"Hwasa, you're a genius!" Jimin's voice chirps happily, "Hyung, it's perfect! You have to stay here with Jungkook, so why don't Taehyung and I pick up all the alcohol and then we'll meet you both in Jungkook's suite?"

 

"Jungkook's suite?" Hoseok echoes. They wanted to go to Jungkook's room to drink? Were they asking for a beating?

 

"Yeah!" Jimin says, "His room is plenty big enough with a makeshift kicthen and plenty of room for six people! And his room's on the opposite side of the Executive Residence than everyone else, so we won't be disturbing anyone. It'll be perfect!"

 

Hoseok rolls his eyes, even though Jimin couldn't really see it, "You guys realize that if you come to his room, you can't get piss drunk, right? You're gonna get fired if you leave here smelling like soju and vomit on the floors. The marble is worth more than our lives put together."

 

"We won't get that drunk!" Hwasa argues, "Well just drink enough to have some fun but not enough to get completely drunk."

 

"Besides," Jimin argues, his voice taking on a knowing tone as if he knew that he was going to get Hoseok to agree for sure, "I'm sure Jungkook would enjoy the company. He rarely gets to do fun things like this. His mother would kill him if she knew he went to a club or a bar."

 

Whoopsies. Hoseok had already taken Jungkook to a bar.

 

But still, the sentimate stops Hoseok. Jimin was right. Jungkook didn't get to do fun things like this often. It was like, sure, Jungkook sometimes ate with everyone at lunch, but that was only for an hour and they weren't exactly aloud to play around. Maybe Jungkook would like being able to have a fun get together like this with everyone. It would surely be fun for the younger, wouldn't it?

 

The more Hoseok thought about it, the more he thought maybe it was a good idea. If it would make Jungkook happy. Jungkook always had a different kind of happy smile on his face whenever he got to hang out with those he considered friends. Hoseok liked it when Jungkook smiled like that. It made him feel like things were alright in the world.

 

"Let me double check with Jungkook first, and then I'm in," Hoseok eventually caves. Jimin and Hwasa let out a victorious cheer.

 

**************************

 

A few hours later, they had just arrived at Jungkook's suite and sat down to eat. 

 

"How much alcohol did you bring?!" Hoseok screeches, staring at the packs and packs of beer Taehyung pulls out of his bags as Jimin pulls out even more bottles of soju out of the bags in his own hands. "I thought we agreed no getting drunk!"

 

"Relax, hyung," Jungkook tells him, placing a hand on Hoseok's knee, causing Hoseok to immediately plop back down onto his seat on the carpet, "We can handle it."

 

"Yeah, Hoseok, calm your tits," Taehyung calls out with a gleaming smile that Hoseok wants to punch off his face.

 

His eyes open comically wide, "EXCUSE YOU, THAT IS HOSEOK-HYUNG TO YOU!"

 

Hoseok ends up hoping out of his seat when Taehyung shrugs casually in defiance, chasing after Taehyung who bolts for his life all the while the rest of the room bursts into laughter.

 

"WHY DOES JUNGKOOKIE GET TO DROP THE HYUNG BUT NOT ME?!"

 

"BECAUSE YOU'RE A BITCH THAT'S WHY!"

 

They end up eating a crap ton of chicken and beer, all the while listening to music and chatting.

 

"Whose playlist is this?" Byulyi asks, "This rapper is fire."

 

Jimin positively beams, "That's my boyfriend! His name is Yoongi, he's a producer and he also raps on the side."

 

"No way!" Byulyi and Jimin get into a long tirade about rap and hip hop and Hwasa and Taehyung decide they wanted to keep feeding the youngest more food and passing him more alcohol. Hoseok kept wanting to reach over and snag the alcohol out of his hands, but he kept himself at bay. Who was he to stop Jungkook from drinking if he wanted to?

 

"Whose up for some karaoke!" Hwasa jumps up, gesturing towards that massive wide screen television Jungkook had set up in his room.

 

For the next hour, the six of them ended up singing all different kinds of songs, from the Big Bang ballads that Jungkook and Jimin seemed to love with Byulti taking over the rap to the Trot songs that Taehyung and Hwasa slayed. Literally all of them had beautiful voices and Hoseok felt like he was a bleating goat compared to them. They could probably featuring him in Taylor Swifts music video and it wouldn't make a difference in the sounds quality.

 

"Aw," Jungkook giggled, scrunching his nose. He was steadily getting more and more drunk as the night wore on, "It's okay, Hoseokie, I like your voice. It's soft and pretty."

 

If Hoseok had been drunk, who knows what he would have done. Maybe he would've shoved the kid off him or maybe he would've smacked him upside the head for being greasy yet again. Or maybe he would've wrapped his arms around Jungkook's midsection and hugged him, cooing,  "Kooooookkkkiiieeeeeeee~ I only have you" as he was known to get very overly affectionate and aegyo-y when he was drunk. But hell, he did that even when he wasn't drunk, so it didn't make that much of a difference.

 

But Hoseok had only drunken one can of beer, and one shot of soju. He was nowhere near drunk. Sure, he was slightly buzzed, but not enough to lose control of himself like everyone else seemed to be doing already.

 

"Okay, that's enough alcohol for you," Hoseok says, taking the bottle from Jungkook's hand. Jungkook makes an offended sound, moving his hand to Hoseok's leg to propel himself forward and lean over Hoseok's legs to get the drink back. Hoseok lifts his arm, holding the bottle as far away from Jungkook as possible.

 

"Hoseokieeeeeeee~" Jungkook whines, hand coming up to rub his arm, "Hobbiiiiii~~~Why are you so mean? I'm not leaving the house so I should be able to drink however much I want!"

 

"He's right Hoseokie," Taehyung pipes in, voice turning even deeper than usual.

 

"Shut it, Tae," Hoseok snips. He was fine with Jungkook calling him these nicknames but it didn't sound right coming from Taehyung's lips. Jungkook tries to hold back his giggles. He's momentarily distracted by Taehyung's sad face, looking like he was going to start weeping in the middle of the room. Jungkook crawls over to Taehyung and wraps his arms around his shoulders, rocking him back and forth like a baby. "Don't cry, TaeTae, Hoseokie is just a meanie."

 

Hoseok gasps, "How dare you? I'm the best fucking think to ever happen to you!" 

 

Hwasa, Byulyi and Jimin crack up, nearly toppling over from their seats on the floor. Hoseok narrows his eyes at them before shooting daggers at Taehyung, who was still fake sobbing in Jungkook's arms.

 

"Okay, that's enough of that," Hoseok grabs ahold of Jungkook's collar and pulls him off Taehyung. Jungkook makes a gagging noise.

 

"Yah! Hoseok! Don't choke your protectee!" Byulyi calls out, laughing with a beer can in her hand.

 

"Unless you're both into that," Jimin snickers. Hoseok kicks him in the shoulder, making him fly into Hwasa's lap who starts to crack up and almost spits her sip of soju up.

 

He sits Jungkook back down in his original spot, "No more alcohol for you."

 

Jungkook lolls over, grabbing ahold of his hand. Hoseok tries to pry it off but Jungkook keeps reaching for it again. "Let go." Jungkook doesn't listen because he's annoying like that.

 

Jungkook suddenly sits up straight, eyes hyper alert as an unbridled smile breaks out over his face, "Let's play a game!"

 

Hoseok groans. What kind of fucked up game could Jungkook be thinking up in his twisted little head? Something like that one Fear Factor show from America? Where they forced people to eat spiders and let snakes crawl all over them in the dark for money? Hoseok was honestly about to cry just thinking about it. He mentally begged Jungkook not to pull that shit on him, because he will piss his pants.

 

"Let's play truth or dare!" Jimin screams his suggestion. No, god fucking damn it, that was even worse. Hoseok, Jungkook and truth or dare was just asking for disaster.

 

"Unless you wanna tell the entire group about that one time Yoongi-hyung called you at work and you sneaked away suspiciously to "take a snack break" only to come back later with your fly down, then I suggest we don't play truth or dare," Hoseok shouts at him. Jimin immediately shuts the idea down.

 

"Let's play Jenga!" Jungkook shouts, body springing up like a Meerkat in a field.

 

"Jenga?" The entire room echoes.

 

"Jenga!" Jungkook jumps up excitedly, stumbling slightly before running over to one of his closets. He flings the door open and reaches up to the top shelf, grabbing ahold of several boxes. Hoseok sees a few other games, Monopoly, Dominos, Chess, as well as card games like Uno and Stop Go. He pushes those back up onto the shelf and returns with the Jenga box in his hand.

 

"Jenga!"

 

Hoseok tried hard not to think about why a 21 year old would have a bunch of board games in his room. Instead he focused on the beaming face Jungkook sported when thinking about playing. Eh, why not? Jenga wouldn't hurt anybody, right?

 

Wrong.

 

"I need absolute silence!" Jungkook's booming voice commands, staring at the tower like it was a bomb and he was the spy who was chosen to cut the wire that would either dismantle it or cause it to explode. "I need to concentrate."

 

The rest of them had already taken their turn, Hoseok himself letting the exictement bubble up and accidentally squawking a bit too loudly. Taehyung had accidentally caused the tower to fall down and his punishment was to take a drink and also get his forearm smacked, to which Hoseok heavily delighted in. Hwasa almost knocked over the tower the second time and Taehyung and Jimin cackled loudly, with Byulyi almost spilling her drink by knocking it over with her elbow.

 

Jungkook took the game extremely seriously, never once letting his choice cause the tower to fall. Hoseok wasn't gonna lie, the game was fun. Once when he successfully pulled a block out, he had rolled back in delight and his leg accidentally kicked the tower, causing it to fall down and him to lose. The whole time, Taehyung kept making sound effects and singing countdown songs to cause them more pressure, but not once did it ever affect Jungkook's focus. 

 

"It looks like an energy bar," Byulyi says once, offhandedly, clearly hungry again in her drunk state.

 

"Caramel is tasty," Jungkook says in response, eyes sliding half shut for a moment before snapping open back to concentration when it came his turn again.

 

In the end, Hoseok is the one to cause the tower to fall over and Jungkook falls all over him laughing at his misery. Hoseok couldn't even find it in himself to be upset, because the game was actually really really fun and everyone had a good time (despite the pressure) and Hoseok liked the way Jungkook's eyes would light up every time it was another person's turn (he couldn't tell if it was was because he was having fun or because he was gleefully waiting for someone else to fuck up).

 

The whole time, Jungkook stuck to his side. He continued to touch him even when Hoseok had to pull away for some reason. He kept using his chest to bump into Hoseok, making Hoseok use his own to push him back. Eventually, it became time for everyone else to head home, after three more rounds of Jenga and one round of Uno (that resulted in tears from a certain someone after having Jungkook whoop his ass, coughTaehyung cough).

 

"Yoongi's gonna kill me if I come home smelling like a bar," Jimin whimpers. Hoseok rolls his eyes. The man was only thinking about his elderly, much grumpier boyfriend now?

 

"Too late for that," Taehyung comments, dragging him out by the sleeve. Hoseok echoes the sentiment.

 

Byulyi and Hwasa followed shortly after, heading home alongside Taehyung and Jimin. Pretty soon it was just Jungkook and Hoseok left alone to clean up the mess. Jungkook was almost ready to pass out as Hoseok cleaned up the game sets and put them back in his closet. Hoseok had to chuckle at the monochromatic wardrobe. Most of the time, Jungkook wore the same thing, and it was actually really funny. Kind of ellicted a weird flare of fondness in Hoseok's chest.

 

When he comes back, he finds Jungkook lying on the ground, nearly passed out completely. Hoseok snickers and goes to Jungkook's makeshift kitchen. He fills up a glass of water for Jungkook and goes back to Jungkook's slumped over body. He pulls the boy up and manages to get him to drink most of the water. Now hopefully he won't be as hungover the next morning. He places the glass of water on the table to deal with later. He turns his attention back to Jungkook and bends over to hoist him up. The boy struggles to stand up, slipping further until Hoseok grabs his arms to wrap around his neck. 

 

"Come on, Kookie," Hoseok grunted, pulling Jungkook along the floor until he reaches the section of his suite that turns into a room with his bed. He manges to angle his body so he could lay Jungkook down on the bed. Just when he thinks he's got Jungkook all situated, the younger hooks his arms under Hoseok and pulls him down.

 

"Aaack!" Hoseok squeaks as he falls over onto Jungkook's bed, "Jungkook!"

 

"Hyung!" Jungkook coos, squeezing Hoseok's midsection, "Hoseokie hyungggg, Hobi hyyyuunngg, Hosheokie, Hoshiki, Hobihobihobihobihobiiiiiiii~"

 

Jesus christ, the boy was drunk off his ass. And just like he had promised he was touching and feeling all up on Hoseok. 

 

Hoseok grunts, struggling to get out of Jungkook's grip. Eventually he does, and he situates himself before readjusting Jungkook's body so that he was underneath the covers, so Hoseok could pull them up over his body. Jungkook was mumbling the whole time, something about how Iron Man could totally save the world from the Sharknado. Sharks were nothing but whiny bitches next to Iron Man. Most of the rest of it was muttered under his breath so Hoseok wasn't able to hear it that well. From what he could tell, all it did was settle in his mind that Jungkook was actually a 5 year old when he was drunk.

 

Finally he manages to get Jungkook completely situated and the younger stops squirming. He stares at Jungkook's face, his eyes having closed like he fell asleep, except Hoseok wasn't exactly sure if he had actually fallen asleep yet or not.

 

Hoseok chuckles at the boy's red face, "I guess you really are a touchy feely drunk."

 

He had expected that from Taehyung and maybe from Jimin, but he hadn't expected it from the youngest. Maybe it was because Taehyung had others to hang all over and Jimin had Yoongi and other people to be with touchy with. Who did Jungkook have? No one really.

 

Hoseok doesn't realize what he was doing until his fingers were already running through Jungkook's hair, smoothing it away from his eyes and tucking the loose strands behind his ears. Hoseok always found he slept easier if someone ran their fingers through his hair. Before he could stop to think about what he was doing, he was already doing the same for the boy laying down before him. The dark strands of hair were soft underneath his hand and he could feel Jungkook's steady breathing on the underside of his palm. He was asleep. 

 

Hoseok was beginning to feel like a creeper, standing in front of Jungkook's bed watching him sleep and petting his hair. He withdraws his hand, ready to turn around when he's stopped.

 

Jungkook's hand had shot out, attaching itself to Hoseok's wrist. Hoseok almost shrieked in terror, completely unprepared for Jungkook to suddenly wake up. When he turns back, Jungkook was blinking up at him sleepily, yet the laser focus on Hoseok's face was almost as terrifying as the jump scare a few moments ago, if not more.

 

"Jungkook?" Hoseok asks, after calming his heart down, "What is it?"

 

"Are you going to leave?" he asks quietly, face still half buried into his pillow, mouth obscured causing his usual lisp mixed with his Busan accent to make his speech even harder to comprehend.

 

"Yeah, I'm gonna go home to sleep. Tomorrow's gonna be hell--"

 

"That's not what I meant," Jungkook interrupts him, effectively shutting him up. Hoseok looks down at Jungkook's warm hand on his wrist. The younger's thumb was moving slowly against the underside of his wrist, side to side, making Hoseok's sensitive skin tingle. 

 

"What did you mean then?" Hoseok's voice was hoarse, the words almost coming out a bit unintelligble.

 

Jungkook's eyes were already fluttering shut again. It was obvious he was fighting to stay awake, "Please don't quit."

 

Hoseok's eyebrows shoot up, "What? Who said I was quitting? I'm not quitting, Jungkookie, you don't have to worry about that."

 

Jungkook's hand slips off his wrist but instead of plopping down onto the bed, he holds his hand up and out to Hoseok, pinky out.

 

"Promise me you won't leave me?" Quit, Hoseok tells himself, he means quit. Jungkook's words were slurred but twinged with a kind of vulernability Hoseok rarely heard in the boy's tone. Hoseok blinked at the pinky being held out to him. Jungkook wanted him to promise him that he wouldn't quit on him. Hoseok didn't know if Jungkook knew what he was asking, but it didn't really matter because at that moment something solidified in Hoseok's mind.

 

Jungkook needed him. It might not always be apparent what with how independent the boy acted most of the time, but nevertheless he needed Hoseok. He needed someone to watch over him and not just in the sense of a professional bodyguard and protectee fashion. He needed someone who would be there if he needed someone to lean on, someone to talk to. And believe it or not, Hoseok wanted to be that person for him. Hoseok wanted to be the person who Jungkook came to if he was feeling like the entire world was against him or like he would be trapped in his cage of a life forever. 

 

Hoseok wanted to be that person for him.

 

Was it a crazy notion? Yes. He was Jungkook's bodyguard and he was being paid to look out for him. But was it worth it? Hoseok thought so. At least, just to see the boy smile more freely, like he hadn't in years. Jungkook wasn't a high profile public figure that needed to be protected at every single moment from physical harm and Hoseok doubted that he would ever become someone like that. So what was the harm in being his bodyguard and also being his friend? Someone who he could lean on emotionally as well?

 

He reaches up and wraps his pinky around Jungkook's, bringing his thumb up to press against the pad of Jungkook's. The motion gains a smile from the younger who stares at their conjoined pinkines for a few moments before looking back up into Hoseok's eyes.

 

He gives their hands a weak shake, a light giggle on his lips, before his eyes flutter shut.

 

"See you in the morning, hyung," he sighs out peacefully before his hand goes slack in Hoseok's.

 

He sets the younger's hand down gently on the bed, tucking the blanket in around it. He runs his thumb over Jungkook's hand one last time, feeling his pulse and knowing that he was safe and going to be finding peace in his sleep at least. Maybe there he could find a place where he was free. The thought brought a smile to Hoseok's face.

 

"See you in the morning, Jungkookie."

Chapter Text

 

"Hoseok," Namjoon calls him over, "Can I have a word?"

 

Hoseok turns to Namjoon, after clocking in. "Yeah, what's up?"

 

Hoseok walks over and Namjoon meets him in the middle. "Have you had a chance to talk to Jungkook today?"

 

Hoseok furrows his eyebrows, concern suddenly spiking, "No. Why? Did something happen?"

 

Namjoon throws his hands up, waving them in front of him, "No, no, nothing happened. I was just wondering if he had talked to you yet about what's happening this weekend."

 

Hoseok shakes his head, still not exactly sure what it was he was supposed to be learning about, "No, he hasn't told me anything about something happening this weekend."

 

"Oh. Well, that's fine." Namjoon says, "Makes sense since it's still morning and I don't even know if anyone has informed him yet. Since I've got you here, I'll just fill you in. This weekend the President will be flying to the United States to attend an important meeting with their President. A summit, of sorts."

 

Hoseok crosses his arms, "Okay, what does that have to do with Jungkook?"

 

"Well, the entire First Family will be going with him, seeing as their President is also hosting a celebratory party for his youngest daughter who is turning 18. They thought it would be nice to have all of the First Family in attendance."

 

Animosity prickles at the back of Hoseok's neck but he pushes it away, trying not to let the sting come out in his voice, "And they want Jungkook to come?"

 

Namjoon lolls his head to the side in a gesture that clearly expresses that that wasn't exactly what he was trying to say, "Jungkook is known as the President's distant nephew, but he's still considered part of the First Family. He's not really well known to the Americans, but President Jeon made it clear that he wanted Jungkook to come along as well."

 

Hoseok was still confused as to why Jungkook was being required to come but he let's the questions slide as he instead asks, "When's the party?"

 

"Well, the President, First Lady and Junghyun will be leaving later this afternoon in order to have time to attend the meeting in the morning and they want Jungkook to fly out tomorrow afternoon so he'll have enough time to fly through the night and get there by the next day. The party will be later that evening. You will be required to escort him from the Executive Residence to the Airport, on the plane and then from the aiport to the White House. All of which security will be helping along. It should all be pretty standard really. A member of staff will discuss return flight details with you later since it is unknown how long they will be staying after the party. It could be a few extra days after or it could be later that night. For right now, it's written in pencil."

 

Hoseok nods his head, listening along. "Okay, that shouldn't be a problem."

 

Hoseok had never been to America before. He wondered what it would be like. Had Jungkook ever been to America before? He would have to ask later for sure.

 

"That's it for today," Namjoon tells him finally, "You may proceed with your day. Oh, and can I trust you to inform Jungkook as well?"

 

Hoseok nods his head again, giving his superior a formal bow, "Yes, sir. I will inform him right away."

 

 

"Excellent," Namjoon bows in return and walks away. Hoseok heads up to Jungkook's room. It was time to start another day of forcing the boy awake. He wondered if he would get kicked in the gut today or smacked in the face. Or maybe both. Either way it was going to be a awkward trying to wake the boy up.

 

Ever since that night a few weeks ago, Hoseok had been hyper aware of himself whenever he was inside Jungkook's room. He couldn't place his finger on what about it had changed. Maybe it was the person who resided inside it, but something had changed, that was for sure.

 

He knocks on the door, deciding to wait patiently outside. Often times Jungkook was not up at this time, but Hoseok knew that it was courtesy to check in case he was awake (which was never)  and always knocked before entering every time. Just like he expected, there was no answer in return. Hoseok takes this as his cue to head inside and wake the younger up. He turns the handle and walks in, taking in the view of Jungkook's room. It was impeccably clean in some places and then disgustingly dirty in others, like near his main closet where all of his dirty clothes would wait until the maids came to pick it up.

 

Hoseok rounded the corner towards where Jungkook's bed was. He expected to find a large lump of dead to the world Jungkook protruding from under the covers, but instead he finds a made bed so perfect that you could probably bounce a coin off it and it would come flying right back to hit you in the head.

 

Hoseok halts in his steps.

 

Where the fuck was Jungkook?

 

There was no way Jungkook would just up and be awake at--he checks his watch--9:30 in the morning! Jungkook didn't do mornings. Not only that but Jungkook never made his bed, leaving that up to the maids as well.

 

Hoseok's mind was swarming with bad ideas, like moths, eating away at his sanity. In a split second he could imagine every bad thing that could have possibly happened to Jungkook. He could've been kidnapped! He could've been blackmailed into going out and meeting somebody and then getting kidnapped and then getting hurt and then dying--

 

Hoseok's heart drops to his stomach and starts to fizzle in his stomach acid. He needed to alert headquarters that Jungkook's was gone immediately. They didn't have time to waste, Jungkook could be seriously hurt and Hoseok would never forgive himself if anything happened to him.

 

He was suddenly filled with flashes of discovering Jungkook's dead body and he almost gags. Visions of a funeral and Jungkook's father weeping and Hoseok not being able to handle any of it. His imagination keeps getting wilder and Hoseok feels like he's gonna flip out.

 

He whips out his phone as fast as he possibly could, moving to dial the phone numbers that would directly take him to the secret service emergency servies and put out an alert on Jungkook--

 

But just then a door opens and he stops. Hoseok whips around, taking in Jungkook's form.

 

There he was, said boy who Hoseok was just seconds ago losing his shit over. Standing in loose black and red gym shorts and a white sweat-soaked tank top. His hair was damp with water dripping all down his face and down onto his neck. The droplets slowly descended down until they pooled in his prominent collarbones. His shirt was soaked through and the persperation on his arms made the outline of his muscles stand out--a sharp contrast to his lean torso--and made the muscles of his pectorals bulge out.

 

Hoseok's eyes didn't know where to land, they kept flickering from one surface of Jungkook's body to another, never stopping. Hoseok's stomach had concaved in on itself, a ripple of something searing that lit him on fire. He felt like he was being torn apart from the inside out. Like two seperate elements fighting over one another. He felt intense relief like a boulder that had been resting on his chest had been lifted seeing that Jungkook was safe, and yet another (maybe even stronger) emotion had decided to rear its head.

 

The same feeling Hoseok had desperately trying to get out of his head ever since that night at the Gala. He thought that he had gotten over it. It was a lapse in judgement; just a fluke of a feeling that snuck up on Hoseok and then subsided just as fast as it showed up.

 

But he was wrong. It hadn't disappeared at all. Like a flame on a stove that would flare when turned up higher, the feeling he had felt had only settled into a low simmer. And now, with Jungkook standing in the room with sweat dropping from every strand of hair on his hair and eyelashes, the feeling was back. It almost made Hoseok want to throw up from the sheer force. The pull so strong like it was reaching into his chest and playing with his intenstines and then wrapping them around his hands and yanking him forward.

 

Hoseok's head that had previously been filled with insects eating away at his brain in worry, now had turned into something else. Like butterflies caught in a sauna as they slowly dropped to the ground from too much heat and moisture in the air.

 

But there was no air in Hoseok's lungs anymore.

 

"Hoseok," the name falling off Jungkook's lips causes Hoseok's mouth to snap shut. "Are you okay?"

 

Jungkook's eyes were framed in concern, aimed at him like he himself hadn't been the one who nearly caused Hoseok to descend into a panicked frenzy near moments ago. Head slightly cleared of the fog, Hoseok finally remembers what had initially caused him to panic.

 

Hoseok face twists into angry relief, "Where were you?" he demands of Jungkook. 

 

He doesn't even let Jungkook answer, instead lets himself talk through his anxiety, "Do you have any idea how terrified I was when I walked in here and you were gone?! Just poof! Gone! And the bed was made! You never make the bed! Where did you go? Why the fuck did you not tell me where you were going? I know you don't have to report yourself to me 24/7 but seriously Jungkook you couldn't even leave me a note or text message or something that would let me know that you were okay and that you hadn't been kidnapped in the middle of the night! I mean, damn they must've been nice kidnappers in order to make your bed for you but that's beside the point! Jesus fucking Christ, Jeon Jungkook, you nearly gave me a motherfucking heart attack."

 

By the time Hoseok manages to calm himself down, Jungkook still hadn't said a word. When Hoseok finally gets a good look at the younger, the boy was just standing their with his mouth slightly open in disbelief and his towel clenched tightly in his hand.

 

Jungkook couldn't seem to find his voice, but the strange look on his face makes Hoseok suddenly realize how unreasonable he was being.

 

He deflates, running a hand over his face, "Shit, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to yell at you like that, I just--" he takes a deep breath trying not to remember how fucking scared he had been when he thought he had lost Jungkook, "--You just really scared me."

 

Jungkook rubs the back of his neck, looking down. There was a look on his face, shy and unusual as he looked to the ground. He speaks slowly, "I'm sorry...I didn't realize that I made you worry. I'm not used to...well..."

 

"A bodyguard who cares about you beyond what he's legally obligated to do?"

 

Jungkook looks like he wants to say something else, but in the end he just nods. He sucks in both his lips in between his teeth, biting them, "Yeah. That. I'm sorry."

 

If Hoseok was being honest, his reaction was more than just a mix of anger and relief over Jungkook coming back. But he wasn't going to think about it anymore. Jungkook's body screamed muscle pig and yet his face was soft like that of baby animal with a deep barely-concealed bashful blush. It was obvious looking at Jungkook's attire that he had gone to the gym.

 

Hoseok lets out a sigh, "It's fine. I--I overreacted.'

 

Jungkook shakes his head, walking deeper into the room and setting down his water bottle on the table and throwing his towel into the laundry basket, "Yeah, kind of..." he lets out a small laugh, "But...thanks."

 

"For what?" Hoseok asks, dazed and confused. Why was Jungkook thanking him for being unreasonable?

 

"For..." Jungkook continues to chew on his lips, making Hoseok force himself not to look in the direction of his mouth, "I don't know, just for...worrying about me."

 

Oh.

 

Oh...okay. Yeah. 

 

Yeah, okay.

 

"I promise I'll let you know next time I go somewhere right before your shift starts," Jungkook tells him, "I kinda lost track of time in the gym and by the time I realized that you were supposed to be here, I had to sprint back."

 

"Why the hell were you in the gym anyway?" Hoseok asks. In the three and a half months he had been working with Jungkook he had yet to see the younger work out. Despite the fact that Hoseok could clearly see that he did--the muscles didn't lie.

 

"I work out all the time, what are you talking about?" Jungkook states.

 

"I've literally never seen you step foot into the gym."

 

"I haven't been going much these past three months, because I've been allowed to go out a lot more and I wasn't about to waste a single second of that time here in this small gym...."

 

Jungkook looks up at him and something seems to pass over his face, as if he was catching himself before he accidentally said something he wasn't supposed to.

 

"...but then I started getting flabby--it must be your influence--so I decided to start going again. Can't let the chocolate melt." Jungkook says easily, eyes crinkling with sass as he tries and succeeds to steer the subject away. 

 

Hoseok picked up on it quite easily. Not wanting to force Jungkook into talking about something he didn't want to, he goes along with it. He rolls his eyes, "Yeah, yeah, whatever."

 

It isn't until after Jungkook has gone and gotten himself ready for the day that Hoseok remembers what he was supposed to tell him.

 

"Hey, Jungkook?" Hoseok asks as Jungkook sits himself down on his couch near where Hoseok was.

 

"Hmmm?" Jungkook asks, looking up from his phone where he was reading a manhwa.

 

"Did you know that your parents and brother are heading to America tonight?" he questions, watching the boys face as he slowly lowers his phone. His face didn't betray any of what he was thinking and yet his whole entire demeanour changed. He gets this far off look in his eye and only blinks once within that time.

 

Eventually he lets out a low, "No."

 

"Namjoon informed me this morning and asked me to tell you," Hoseok says slowly,  "I didn't know if maybe you knew already or not...?"

 

The implications were obvious. Hoseok was asking if either of his parents or his brother had taken the time to tell him this before Hoseok had been notified. Just as the implications were clear, so was the answer. Hoseok couldn't tell what the glassy look in Jungkook's eyes were a result of. But he could guess.

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "No. Nobody told me anything."

 

Hoseok didn't know if he should try to comfort the boy or leave the subject be. Thinking about what he himself would have wanted and combining it with his knowledge that he had come to know about Jungkook, Hoseok knew that the boy did not want to be pitied. He didn't want someone to look at him with eyes that said "I'm sorry your parents don't pay attention to you". He didn't want any of that.

 

He wanted someone to understand, sure. But someone to pity? That answer was a very stern no.

 

So Hoseok decided to do what his job required and fill Jungkook in, "Your father is going to meet with the President of the United States and subsequently his entire family was invited along to attend his daughter's 18th birthday party. That means they want you to come along too--"

 

Jungkook looks up at this. Shocked that his parents had wanted him to come along, or suprised maybe that it was just a formality that they expected him to come despite not being considered immediate family. Either way, he doesn't say anything and lets Hoseok continue to deliever all of the necessary information, "They are leaving this afternoon and will be landing in the States sometime tomorrow morning. They want you to fly out tomorrow night and join them for the party. They'll be there for the entire weekend but it is most likely that they would only need you there for the party."

 

Jungkook makes a scoff noise, as if he was expecting this just as he had been waiting for the other shoe to drop. "Typical."

 

Hoseok had to fight the urge to reach out and touch him. It was a knee-jerk reaction, almost as automatic as breathing--his arm lifts as if to press against Jungkook's shoulder--but he stops himself mid-air. But that's what confused him. Why did he fell the need to stop himself? He wasn't doing anything wrong with trying to comfort Jungkook...right?

 

In the end, he lets himself place his hand on Jungkook's shoulder. When the younger boy feels it, he looks towards Hoseok's hand. He stares at the place where they were connected for a second before looking up and into Hoseok's eyes. He hoped that whatever he saw there was something that translated to the younger that he was actually here for him.

 

His chest deflates as Jungkook ends up giving him a small quirk of his mouth as a smile. Hoseok takes it as a good sign and this time brings his hand up to pet the back of Jungkook's head. The younger presses back lightly, eyelashes flickering as he seems to forget everything they had been talking about and was instead focusing on Hoseok and the feel of his hand in his hair.

 

Hoseok couldn't help but mimic the smile on Jungkook's face as it grew more calm and relaxed. "I'll be with you the whole time. You don't have to be alone anymore, Jungkook....No more."

 

He felt compelled to say those words and he was powerless to stop them from slipping out of his mouth. If anything, it made Jungkook press back even more into Hoseok's open palm against his hand that had traveled somehow from the back of his head to almost the side of his face.

 

Jungkook lets out a soft noise, eyes glancing down and away from Hoseok like he couldn't bring himself to look Hoseok in the eye when he said his next words, "Well...then I guess it won't be so bad."

 

Hoseok nods his head, insides curling with something unusual at the way Jungkook's mouth slurred the words and craving to hear it again, "Not so bad at all."

 

******************************

 

"What the hell do you mean our flight was cancelled?" Hoseok demands of the airport staff.

 

"We're sorry sir, but we can't control the weather," the man says, voice tight with half-assed concealed irritation, "It's monsoon season and flights are being cancelled and delayed left and right. There's not much we can do expect try to switch your tickets to another flight."

 

"When is the soonest direct flight out to Washington D.C?" Hoseok asks. He still thought that it was absolute bullshit that Jungkook wasn't allowed to be transported using Air Force One. Maybe he would've understood had the aircraft still been in the United States but it had come back earlier this morning. He'd tried to talk to Namjoon about it but the man had just said that it was policy. They could not fly anyone out on Air Force One unless the president themselves was on it.

 

So Hoseok and Jungkook were left to fly out on a regular plane. Which would have been fine if their fucking flight hadn't been cancelled. They needed to be on this  flight. They already had security ready to pick them up at the airport whilst the President was at his meeting but as soon as that meeting ended the security would be required to return to the President's side. If they didn't make it out of the airport in time, they were going to have to find their own way to the White House.

 

"We don't have any directs but there is a flight scheduled to head to New York. Washington DC is only a four hour drive from there. That is our soonest flight out unless you would like to reschedule for Monday when we have another direct flight. Would you like me to book that for you sir?" the man asks, typing away at his computer.

 

Hoseok runs a hand over his face. Fuck it, he had no other choice. "Okay, yes do that please."

 

"Right away, sir." Before Hoseok knew it two new tickets were printed in front of him and he made sure to check both his and Jungkook's bag. They had two hours to kill before their flight and then they would be on their way to America. Hopefully the secret service could wait just a little bit longer for them. Hoseok would have to contact them soon enough anyway.

 

When he made it back to where Jungkook had been waiting, he tries to fix the irritation on his face before the younger could see. It doesn't really work and Jungkook sees right through him.

 

"They cancelled the flight, didn't they?" Jungkook asks.

 

"Yep."

 

"Fuck."

 

"I know," Hoseok groans, "but I managed to get us on the next soonest flight out. We have a two hour wait though and there's no guarentee that this one won't also be cancelled or delayed. Damn monsoons."

 

Jungkook pulls his beanie down a little over his ears with a chuckle, "Rain makes you look like a drowned cat."

 

"I believe the description you are looking for is a magnificent stallion charging through the water, beauty and power unrivalled," Hoseok answers back, remembering how they had had to scramble out from the weather earlier when they were headed to the airport.

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "Nope. I'm pretty sure I meant a drowned cat."

 

"Well, at least I don't look like a baby bunny who just got dunked in a puddle," Hoseok tells him. Jungkook makes a gross noise.

 

"I can't believe you would use that against me," he says with a disappointed pout, "I thought we had something special."

 

Hoseok shoves Jungkook lightly, "Shut the fuck up and let's just head to our gate, okay?"

 

Jungkook giggles brightly, not even caring about the misfortunate events that had just occured, and bumps Hoseok lightly with his chest. He follows after him as he walks away from the check in desk and towards security. It ended up taking them a little while to get through, but at least that meant less down time waiting. After security it left them with only one hour before their flight so they made do.

 

Hoseok was actually rather tired but seeing as his job was to make sure that his eyes and ears were always open to make sure that no possible threats could come to Jungkook, he couldn't exactly take a nap. He couldn't take his phone out to scroll through social media or play a game, like Jungkook currently was. He couldn't get up to go to the bathroom unless Jungkook accompanied him. This was the biggest assignment he had ever recieved since he had started working for the Blue House. Sure, he had had to deal with minor security details but never one that involved just the two of them heading to another country without any other security with them. Jungkook's safety was completely resting on him.

 

Hoseok sat up as straight as he could in his seat, not exactly of his own will. His stomach was twisty and he wasn't sure if they uncomfortable feeling in his stomach was because he was hungry or if he had to go to the bathroom. Or maybe it was nerves.

 

Truth be told, Hoseok had never flown on an international flight. He had only taken small one-hour domestic flights and those he was usually able to sleep through if he took a sleeping pill. This time their flight would be ten hours long before they landed in New York and another four before they got to Washington DC.

 

And Hoseok would have to be awake and alert the whole time.

 

He didn't know if he could handle it. Planes had always used to scare him--he really did hate heights--and he was beginning to think that maybe he had made a mistake in trying to become a bodyguard. He knew that he would have to face dangerous situations and most of those he was okay with. He wasn't going to be forced to watch horror movies and he wasn't going to be forced to walk through a field of flesh eating blood sucking spiders, so he had thought that he would be okay.

 

He never actually thought that he would be required to travel overseas. In a plane. That flew at least 36,000 ft in the air. And could fall at any second should just one thing go wrong on the huge metal contraption. They could plummet to their deaths at any moment.

 

That was the one question that they didn't ask at the interview: are you a nervous flier?

 

Why did they never ask him? Because the position they were hiring for was domestic security. Nowhere in the job description did it say "required to accompany members of the First Family across miles and miles of deadly cold water where you could possibly crash and drown in a watery grave".

 

He had been promoted and with that came all the extra requirements. Hoseok thought he could handle them.

 

But truth be told...he could feel the panic building up inside him the faster the time to board the plane came. Hoseok wasn't looking in Jungkook's direction at all; afraid the other would notice in a second flat. Instead, he did what his basic perimeter scanning training taught him. Scan the left of their location, then scan the right. Take in each face of the people around them; search for anything suspicious. Move on within five seconds so as to not arouse suspicion or attract attention to himself. Every five minutes; staggered, check behind you. Every odd ten minutes get up to get a better view. Go to throw something away, or get up to look into your luggage. Get a drink from the vending machine or pretend to stretch. This was the same ritual he would have to do on the plane.

 

Which he was not looking forward to at all.

 

"Boarding has now begun," the voice over the speaker rang out, making Hoseok jolt ever so slightly. He shuts his eyes for the briefest of seconds before taking a breath and opening them back up. He could do this. He could protect Jungkook and get them to America in one piece. He could make this trip a sucess. He could handle flying on this plane.

 

He could do this....He...He-he could do this...

 

*********

 

Something was wrong with Hoseok, Jungkook knew this at least. The older man hadn't said not one word to him since they had gotten to the gate. He didn't say anything when they got on the plane and they took their seats--Jungkook by the window and and Hoseok in the middle with the third aisle seat empty. He didn't say anything when the plane took off either, even though his hands were clenched tight around the arm rests and his gaze was held straight forward--staring at nothing with his jaw clenched.

 

Jungkook knew that it was going to be tough for Hoseok to stay awake for the entire flight but something else seemed to be the matter. But Jungkook wasn't the type to badger. He knew where to draw the line and let Hoseok be. It hadn't happened very often since they had known each other, only once or twice but it had still happened.

 

Hoseok wasn't usually one to get upset. He usually had a friendly disposition and even if he did get a tad bit irritated, he would bounce back and wouldn't keep the atmosphere over his head. But then there were other times when Jungkook could tell by looking at Hoseok once that he didn't want to be bothered. So Jungkook didn't tease him or try to play with him. He just let the man do his job in peace. Jungkook knew that it was appreciated too, since the next day Hoseok would come back and he would be all smiles again--extra affectionate almost--never without a hand somewhere on Jungkook, be it his shoulder or his back. He would sneak him more food and tell him about how he was in the works to try to get them permission to go somewhere even more fun like Hongdae or Gangnam. Those were always really nice days; they were the ones Jungkook enjoyed the most because Hoseok paid even more attention to him than normal.

 

Jungkook liked it when Hoseok paid attention to him.

 

Most of their days were spent in each others company but more often times than not Jungkook would be preoccupied with something like school or the minor political conferences that his mother insisted he sit in on in order to 'learn a thing or two'. It was boring and Jungkook didn't like those days. Those were the days when they would go to lunch and Hoseok would end up spending most of the time talking with his co-employees. Maybe it would've been different if it was just Jimin and Taehyung--both people he trusted--but often times it wasn't just them.

 

He knew Hwasa and Byulyi, they had all even drank together, but he had liquid courage during those times. During lunches he didn't. In all honesty, often times he felt like he was intruding in on these lunches. He had begun to feel like a burden and would stay quiet, just listening and not even trying to input anything into the conversation.

 

But then Hoseok would put his hand on his thigh and Jungkook would feel the warmth seep in through his clothes. He would feel exactly what Hoseok was trying to say. He was saying that even though he was talking to someone else at the moment, he was still very much aware of Jungkook's presence and he hadn't forgotten about him. Usually after a few minutes Hoseok would steer the conversation back and try to include Jungkook and he really appreciated that Hoseok was trying so hard to include him.

 

It was strange though. Being the youngest of everyone in this group of Hoseok's co-workers--his friends--and also being the one that many of them thought of as the President's troublesome hidden second son. None of them ever treated him differently though and Jungkook didn't know if it was because they wouldn't dare to try that with him or if it was because they actually considered him--maybe like an acquaintance. A regular person.

 

Jungkook sure hoped so.

 

Those were his days. Most of them were good. They were good because Hoseok was there to play with him and make him laugh and joke around with him. They were good because he was no longer stuck inside all day long and was allowed to go out and explore, at least a little. They were good because he was no longer getting looks from random Blue House staff like they should try their best to avoid him and never set foot in his path. They were good because although his mother still got on his case quite often, his dad would give him this look; a look that said "I'm happy that this arrangement is working out so well".

 

They were good because Jungkook was finally starting to feel like he wasn't a prisoner locked away in a tower anymore. A sad Korean male version of Rapunzel, except Jungkook was far from golden.

 

He was finally starting to feel like a human....and he would be lying if he didn't acknowledge that it was all because of Hoseok.

 

Hoseok had come into his life like a ray of light and he had just...suddenly made everything better. Jungkook knew it well and to know that had all happened so unexpectedly and almost completely on a whim...it sort of baffled him.

 

Jungkook had never had a hyung like Hoseok. Definitely not his own older brother and Jimin and Taehyung were more like bros if he was being honest. Hoseok treated him like a good hyung would but at the same time he didn't. He didn't treat Jungkook like a dongsaeng in the way that made it seem like he thought Jungkook was someone who was beneath him. That was always something Jungkook had had a hard time accepting as part of his own culture. He lived by it and followed it because everybody else did and he grew up with it, but deep in his heart he didn't believe in it.

 

It was just one of those things. He didn't like being made to feel like he was superior or inferior to anyone else just because of his age or his position. He didn't want to be treated with respect because of that, he wanted to be treated with respect because he was a good person with values and a heart and the kind of wisdom that deserved respect.

 

That was how he saw Hoseok. He was techincally his hyung but...not so suddenly but ever so gradually, Jungkook had come to see him as much more than that. More than a lifeline, more than a protector as his job description read oh-so conviently. More than someone who was older and someone who had an odd sort of power over him.

 

Sometimes he would accidentally let the words "hyung" slip out from his lips when Hoseok did something that made him feel particularly strange. It happened every so often and every time Jungkook would delve back into his mind and interogate himself like "did I actually just call someone hyung willingly?" But in Jungkook's eyes Hoseok deserved that kind of respect.

 

Anyone who as good a person as Hoseok deserved it.

 

But even still Jungkook found himself drawn to Hoseok in different ways. He wasn't sure what it was or when it began but one day he had just stopped. He stopped looking at Hoseok like...like he had been. Suddenly instead of making fun of Hoseok and just enjoying his reactions and retorts, he would hope that Hoseok would just smile and say "Aw, Jungkookie's so cute when he's being annoying" and run his hand over the back of his hair. Suddenly, instead of just simply enjoying the freedom Hoseok provided for him, he found himself craving to enjoy that freedom alongside Hoseok. He found himself craving to see the fond smiles and deadpan judgey faces when Jungkook said something particularly crude.

 

He just found himself enjoying Hoseok's presence. So much that he just...he didn't want Hoseok to leave. When Hoseok would go home for the night, Jungkook found himself wanting to stop him and ask a dangerous question.

 

"Why don't you stay?" 

 

When Hoseok would step out of the room during his private lessons, Jungkook would suddenly find himself distracted wondering what Hoseok was up to because believe it or not, having Hoseok in the same room as him actually helped him to concentrate. As if he could feel Hoseok's vibes coming off him even from across the large room, and brushing along his shoulders and the back of his neck as if saying "I'm here Jungkook, you can do this."

 

Jungkook had never depended on anyone in his life. Not his parents, not his older brother, not his ex boyfriend, not even Jimin and Taehyung. He had adapted to surive. He had learned to handle himself on his own, despite the crushing weight of the chains wrapped around his ankles.

 

Even now with those chains loosened, Jungkook wondered if maybe this scary feeling he had buried deep down into his chest was just that--a weird feeling of finally being able to let himself depend on someone else; need someone else. He didn't want to become dependent on Hoseok but he was scared he already was.

 

Hoseok had become someone irreplacable to him and not just because of the benefits that came along with having him as a bodyguard. He had become someone Jungkook had found himself opening up to. He had become someone Jungkook trusted enough to let him in and let him see what was really going on deep down inside him. Down into the parts that even Jungkook himself didn't want to see.

 

Hoseok just...knew it. He never pushed if he could help it and he let Jungkook open up on his own. He gave him a choice. A choice to do what he wanted with himself and that--that was a honestly a power Jungkook had never felt before.

 

He couldn't tell anymore if what he craved was the power and the freedom that Hoseok gave him...or if what he was craving was the person who provided it.

 

Either way, looking at Hoseok right now, Jungkook could tell that this was something that Hoseok wasn't going to get him involved with. It was something Hoseok wanted to be left alone with but at the same time...Jungkook wanted to be there for him. Hoseok had been giving and giving and giving all that he had to Jungkook in the five months that they had known each other and yet Jungkook had not given much back in return.

 

He felt imbalanced, like something was amiss and all he knew was that he wanted to be able to give Hoseok what he always gave Jungkook, no questions asked. So even though it went against his better instincts, Jungkook decided that maybe defying his instincts sometimes worked out in the long run.

 

Four hours into the flight and Hoseok hadn't moved an inch. Jungkook had turned on some movie in his seat but he wasn't watching it. Instead, he was watching Hoseok out of the corner of his eye. The older hadn't moved. His breathing was shallow and his eyes were darting back and forth--right, left, center--and back again.

 

Jungkook knew that Hoseok wasn't allowed to actually entertain himself during this flight, instead having to be alert at all times in case of an emergency, but this was more than just being alert. This was something else. Something was plaguing Hoseok and Jungkook wanted to be the one to find the ailment and give him the cure. Jungkook wanted to be the one to make him feel better.

 

If Hoseok felt better, then Jungkook would feel better.

 

He just didn't know how to approach Hoseok--maybe talk to him or reach out to touch him. But he didn't want to startle the man who was so obviously wrapped up in his own head that it looked almost painful. His hands were clenched around the seat and Jungkook was beginning to wonder if maybe Hoseok was feeling nauseous. Maybe he got motion sickness? Jungkook was sure that he had packed some motion sickness patches in his bag somewhere. Maybe if he could locate them he could offer them to Hoseok and--

 

The plane shook with a hard tug. Jungkook's stomach dropped for a painful moment as he heard the noises of many passengers letting out suprised and concerned gasps. Hoseok himself had let out a sharp whimper and inhaled a deep breath. When the plane stablized itself a voice came through the airways.

 

"Ladies and gentlemen, please bear with us. We are expecting some minor turbulence up ahead but it is nothing to worry about--"

 

The plane shook hard again and this time Hoseok moved. The back of his head hit the seat cushion and he shut his eyes tight. A pained moaned escaped from his lips, sealed shut and he began to inhale and exhale sharply through his nose and gritted teeth.

 

"--please remain seated until the 'fasten your seatbelt' sign has turned off. Thank you."

 

"Hoseok," Jungkook's light voice called out gently, gracing his fingers over the top of Hoseok's hand clutched tight around the arm rest. "Hoseok, are you okay?"

 

Hoseok eyes shifted and fluttered as if he was trying to open his eyes. "Y-yeah...yeah, Jungkookie, I'm good. I'm fine, I'm--"

 

The plane shook again and this time Hoseok seized hold of Jungkook's hand so hard that his blood circulation almost cut off.

 

"Hyung!" Jungkook called out again with a jump, suddenly more concerned than he had been previously. Jungkook brought his free hand up to cup Hoseok's face. "Hey, hyung, listen to me. You're okay."

 

"I'm not okay, Jungkookie," Hoseok's eyes opened and his lips moved and Jungkook was struck by the pure terrified look in Hoseok's eyes, "I'm not okay. The plane is gonna crash and we're gonna die."

 

Jungkook somehow managed to scoot closer, moving the arm rest separating their seats up so he could press his side into Hoseok as he gripped his hand tightly.

 

"Hey, hey, Hoseok," Jungkook tried but Hoseok just shut his eyes again and squeezed his hand. Tight breaths escaped his lips but he wasn't breathing deeply. He would pass out from fear at this rate and Jungkook didn't want that. He wanted Hoseok to calm down and then go to sleep, but passing out from fear--that was something Jungkook couldn't bear to see. Not from Hoseok.

 

Jungkook had known that Hoseok was a bit of a scaredy cat, and the irony was not lost on him. The older had once let out a terrified shriek one time when a bee flew in his direction when they were walking along a mountain river path. Jungkook had laughed at that time, but he had also taken notice to the fact that Hoseok hated bugs--especially bugs that could fly. And spiders. The man was hilariously terrified of spiders. But Jungkook couldn't really blame him, he wasn't a fan of insects either. But he more wanted to square up and fight them rather than run away screaming.

 

He could also tell that Hoseok hated anything related to horror, seeing as one time Jungkook had asked if they could go to the movie theaters and Hoseok had almost popped a lung begging him not to see The Conjuring.

 

Hoseok was scared of heights and he didn't like looking over railings. He managed to avoid situations with them pretty well. Jungkook hadn't known that that fear extended to planes. He felt like an idiot--he should've known.

 

But now was his chance. Now was his chance to be that person for Hoseok who the older had been for him all along. Now was his chance to do something for someone else who needed it. Now was his chance to be who he wanted to be for Hoseok.

 

The plane still shook and Hoseok whimpered and his closed eyes shook behind his eyelids, "Jungkookie..."

 

"I'm here," Jungkook finds himself saying before he runs his hand down the length of Hoseok's face down to his chin. "Hoseok--Hobi..."

 

Hoseok's eyes opened slightly upon hearing the nickname. Jungkook had only ever called him that when he was drunk. Jungkook guessed that now was the first time for a lot of things.

 

"Hobi," Jungkook tried again, looking into Hoseok's eyes and tracing the circles of his irises, "I need you to deep breaths for me okay. Inhale"-- he watched as Hoseok followed his instructions alongside his example--"and exhale. Okay, good. Keep doing that. I'm right here. I'm not going to leave you."

 

Jungkook rubbed his hand down the length of Hoseok's arm and all the way down to his other hand. He rubbed loosely to create some heat, seeing as Hoseok's fingers were freezing. When Hoseok seemed to finally start to calm down, his tried to open his eyes but his eyelids kept drooping.

 

"Go to sleep, Hobi, it's okay," Jungkook says quietly, letting his voice drift over into Hoseok's ears like a calming lullaby, "I'll be fine. I'll be safe. You should sleep."

 

"I..I--can't," his voice came out choppy, like it was a strain on his throat, "I have to p-prot-t..."

 

Jungkook brings his one hand away from Hoseok's and places it back on his face. Hoseok looked like he was drifting, barely able to keep his eyes open. Jungkook didn't know what kind of puppet strings were controlling his movements, but it was like his hands had a mind of their own. They roamed down over the sharp bones of Hoseok's cheeks, contrasting drastically with the smooth softness of his skin. They traced over Hoseok's nose and his eyebrows, stopping for a moment at his temples to apply light pressure in slow soothing circles.

 

Hoseok lets out a soft pant and his eyes almost lull back into his head. One of Jungkook's fingers descends slowly down the length of the side of Hoseok's face whilst the other moves up into Hoseok's brow, starting from the top of his head. He slowly slips his fingers past individual strands of hair, stroking softly and pushing back lightly so as to let it cool off Hoseok's forehead. In the mean time his other hand, still touching Hoseok's cheeks, had roamed a little farther inland. Where they should've stopped along Hoseok's chin, instead they moved up slightly.

 

The pad of his thumb traced lightly over the soft skin of Hoseok's top lip, the breath of his pants puffing lightly onto Jungkook's skin. Moisture started to build up on Jungkook's own brow, but he was far too mesmerized with tracing Hoseok's face to care. His thumb looped around to trace alongside Hoseok's bottom lip, feeling them tremble ever so slightly--perhaps from Hoseok still struggling to regulate his breathing.

 

Hoseok's eyes had fallen shut and Jungkook began to wonder if Hoseok had fallen asleep.

 

The hand in Hoseok's hair continued to brush as Jungkook removed his fingers from Hoseok's lips and brought them back to Hoseok's hand. He slipped his hand underneath Hoseok's and wiggled his fingers into the slots between the older man's fingers. Hoseok's chest was rising and falling with a relatively normal pace and Jungkook felt like he had just won the first place gold medal in the world olympics.

 

"Hobi," Jungkook whispered softly into the quiet air around them, the plane finally seeming to manage to stablize itself, "are you awake?"

 

The small little moan that escapes between Hoseok's lips was so faint that Jungkook could tell that Hoseok was on the verge of passing out. Jungkook didn't stop the light stroking of his hair, letting the motion soothe the older man to sleep.

 

After another minute, Jungkook tries again, "Hobi..."

 

There was no noise of acknowledgment this time. Nothing. Jungkook shifts back into his seat, adjusting the armrest so that it was completely put away and that Hoseok was no longer resting with his head against the headrest. Instead, Jungkook moved Hoseok's head onto his shoulder and shifted their still conjoined hands so they were held together in a comfortable position in the middle. The new angle meant that Jungkook couldn't reach over and run his fingers through Hoseok's hair anymore, but the older man was asleep now so Jungkook figured it would be okay.

 

He stared openly, knowing this would most likely be the only chance he would ever get to.

 

He lets out a small sigh, "You're really pretty, Hobi. Did you know that?"

 

He knew Hoseok wouldn't answer. He was really too far gone into that deep sleep that Jungkook knew was most likely to last the entire plane ride. It was better that way. If Hoseok slept the whole way then he wouldn't be scared anymore. Jungkook didn't want Hoseok to be scared. He wanted Hoseok to be happy and smile that heart shaped smile of his. He didn't want him to be shaking with fear and eyes glassy with unshed tears.

 

Hoseok was always good looking, but he always looked the best when he was well and truly happy--whether that was simply smiling or laughing--and Jungkook pariticularly liked it when those smiles were aimed at him and those laughs rang out alongside his.

 

That was when Hoseok looked the most pretty.

 

"You're really really beautiful, Hobi hyung," Jungkook said so quietly that he could not even hear himself. "Sleep well."

 

Jungkook didn't know what was going on in Hoseok's head right now as he let his hand caress the side of his face on last time, but he hoped that whatever he was dreaming that it was pleasant and warm.

 

*******************************

 

Hoseok was comfortable. He was warm, snuggled up against whatever pillow was underneath his head. He had been having a really nice dream. The memory of it was still in the forefront of his mind as he was still swimming in that space between asleep and awake. He didn't want to wake up though. Sleeping was so nice so he snuggled deeper into whatever comfortable nook he was pressed against.

 

He had dreamed that he was standing by a large body of water--not an ocean or a sea, just like a fountain or a pool or something. He remembered holding someone's hand as they walked slowly together. It had been so so nice. Hoseok hadn't felt that at peace in a while. He could feel the care coming from the person in his dream and it warmed his insides. He wanted to hold onto that feeling forever.

 

Every relationship he had been in in the past had been complete and utter failures. He wasn't even sure why, but they had been. Something had gone wrong to fuck them up, and Hoseok was almost entirely sure it had always been his fault. He had done something to push them away. He would be so confused as to whether it was something he did or something he said or...if it was just him.

 

Either way, they all ended in disaster and every time it was like a knife to Hoseok's gut. It chipped away at him and made him feel like every relationship he would ever be in would be bound to end in disaster. It was scary. Scarier than anything else he had ever been afraid of. That it was something about him, something he didn't know and therefore couldn't change, that just...fucked up everything good he ever had.

 

In his dream, he got some of those good feelings back. It had been nearly three years since he had last been in a relationship with anybody. After last time...their breakup had been bad. A lot of screaming and crying on both ends...okay, well more like on Hoseok's end. It took him a long ass time to get over it but he had thrown himself into school and work but in the end he had managed to pull himself through.

 

He had come out okay after everything.

 

But there was still a dull stinging in his chest whenever he thought about the way things used to be. It wasn't even the person he missed, just...just the feeling. The feeling of being loved and getting to give all of his love to someone else. It was something that Hoseok had thought he had had in all of those relationships. But he had been oblivious. He had wanted and loved them more than they had loved and wanted him.

 

Hoseok had grown used to it.

 

He would always love others more than they loved him. It was just the way of his life. He had accepted it and learned to move on.

 

But still, getting to feel that in his dreams gave him an odd sense of hope. Like maybe...he was wrong. But it was a dream. The love and affection he felt coming from the person in his dream was just that--a reflection of his subconscious. It was just something that he wanted so badly but would only get when his mind created it in his dreams. It was his mind telling him to wake the fuck up, because he wouldn't ever get the chance to feel that unless it was in a dream.

 

So Hoseok wanted to stay there.

 

He wanted to stay in his dream, holding this warm person close and feeling their heartbeat. He could feel it in his ears; the steady beat, the strong rhythmic thumping that reminded him of the backbeat of a song. It almost made him want to get up and dance. Almost.

 

The need to stay as close to this person in his dream was much more important to him in that moment. He didn't want to leave the comfort. He wanted to snuggle up against it and tell them thank you. Thank you for loving me and I love you too. The pull towards this faceless entity in his dreams was so strong that Hoseok was powerless to resist it. He didn't even want to try.

 

But all good things must come to an end. All happiness must find its way back to the emptiness in which the feeling stemmed from. An endless cycle, like life and death was asleep and awake.

 

Hoseok's eyes fluttered open when a medium volumed feminine voice traveled down to him and a thin hand tapped him on the shoulder. He was disoriented for a moment, looking around with his eyes dropping before he finally looked up towards where the voice was coming from. It was the flight attendant.

 

"We're sorry sir, but we've arrived. Everyone must exit the plane now," she said kindly and Hoseok nodded once before she left. Hoseok turns back to where he had been resting. It is then that he realizes that he had actually been lying down half on his side. The warmth coming from his side had actually been someone else.

 

That someone else was currently passed out against the window, a small pillow under their face. Their bodies slumped to the side, Hoseok had fallen asleep snuggled up in the crook of Jungkook's chest and in turn the other boy had fallen asleep himself. The younger's body was turned slightly towards him, chest and midsection spread wide with one arm hanging down off the seat.

 

Where was the other? Hoseok shifts ever so slightly and that's when he feels it. On his hip, fingers spread wide but loose, Jungkook's hand was resting. His entire arm had looped around his back and had rested partially on his waist, partially on his hip. Looking back up at the boy's sleeping body, Hoseok's eyes stop at the curve of the breast bone on Jungkook's chest.

 

There's drool. And it wasn't Jungkook's.

 

Not only had Hoseok been sleeping half on Jungkook's side, half on his chest but he had drooled on him. And his hand on his waist was making his skin tingle so much that it made him jittery. He didn't know what to do. He had fallen asleep on the plane. Even worse he had fallen asleep on Jungkook.

 

Okay, okay, calm down. What is there to do? Think, Hoseok.

 

They had to get off the plane right now. Maybe if Hoseok just kept up with the hustle and bustle of getting up and off, he could distract Jungkook from ever knowing. Hopefully he wouldn't notice the wet spot of drool if he was too busy gathering bags and leaving. Yeah! And by that time, it should dry right?

 

Hoseok inwardly apologized to the younger before he quickly situated himself to seem like he was all ready and all cool and was waiting for Jungkook.

 

He pats the side of Jungkook's face lightly, "Jungkookie, time to get up! We're here, we gotta go!"

 

Jungkook stayed asleep. Fucking damn it. Hoseok should've known that this wasn't just a morning occurance. What was that thing that Jimin had told him was a sure fire way to wake Jungkook up instantly?

 

He snaps his fingers! That's right!

 

He reaches forward and twists both Jungkook's nipples.

 

"AUGH!" Jungkook snaps awake, sitting forward with a groggy swoosh. "Hyung, what the fuck! I'm gonna murder Jimin when he's on the toilet, I swear!"

 

"It's time to get off the plane! You can murder Jimin for telling me all your secrets later," Hoseok tells him fake cheerily, hoping Jungkook didn't stop to think about what they had been doing while they were asleep, "We gotta go now, my sweet, so lets get a move on!"

 

Jungkook looked momentarily stunned but Hoseok was mostly sure it was because Jungkook was still adjusting to waking up and not because he had accidentally called him 'my sweet'. Hoseok mentally smacks himself in the face. How the hell did that slip out?

 

Quickly, the both of them scramble to gather their stuff and exit the plane. Hoseok checked the time. They were behind schedule but perhaps if Hoseok was lucky, they could still get secret service out here to give them a ride. It was kind of far, but it wasn't that bad of a drive, right?

 

"We're sorry, Hoseok, the President is still in his meeting and we can't get any of our officers out there," he was told through the phone.

 

Hoseok let out a sigh and passed the phone from one ear to the other, "Okay, what about the American secret service? Surely, they could spare a few men to come out and pick us up?"

 

"Sorry, Hoseok, Jungkook is low priority," Hoseok's skin prickled at these words, "Any security that isn't working at the meeting is working on other things. We're not the only foreign administrations that have flown in for this meeting."

 

"So what does that mean?" Hoseok demands, "We're on our own to find our way from New York all the way to Washington DC?"

 

"Sorry." Hoseok hangs up. 

 

God. Damn. It.

 

How the fuck was he supposed to get the pair of them all the way to Washington DC without knowing the way?

 

"Everything okay?" Jungkook asks, knowing full well that everything was not okay.

 

Hoseok shakes his head, "They can't spare any men to come pick us up. We have to find our own way to the White House."

 

"Oh," Jungkook says, "Well that shouldn't be too bad right? We can just get a taxi or take a bus or something."

 

"That's all well and good except I don't know how to use the American transportation system," Hoseok groans to himself. Where were the going to find a bus that took them where they needed to go? He guessed they could try a taxi?

 

Their best option at this moment was to try to get the address to the White House and use it to tell the taxi driver where to go.

 

They make their way out and wait on the curb for an empty taxi to pull up. In the mean time, Hoseok takes his phone out and searches for the White House in English. God, he was always so bad at speaking English.

 

When a taxi pulls up, they show the man driving the address.

 

He starts to speak in rapid fire English, pointing to the addresss and waving his hands around. The only words Hoseok could catch were "far" and "more". Honestly, it didn't matter what the driver said as long as he could get them there.

 

"You..." Hoseok tries again, trying not to get frustrated with himself, "You drive us here...yes?"

 

The man nods although he starts to say something else with a tone that conveyed that maybe something wasn't entirely right. Either way, whatever it was they could deal with it later. He had enough money to pay the man for whatever distance and as long as they didn't run into any complications they should be fine.

 

When they get in the taxi Jungkook leans into him and asks, "You speak English?"

 

"No. Do you?"

 

"No." Jungkook shakes his head, "None of my lessons ever stuck except 'pardon'."

 

"Damn."

 

"Shit." Jungkook agrees.

 

"Fuck."

 

"We're fucked, aren't we?"

 

"No! We're not, I think the driver understood where we wanted to go so I think we'll be fine," Hoseok insists.

 

"But what if we're not fine?" Jungkook asks.

 

"Always the pesismist here, aren't you?" Hoseok asks him, latching onto the younger's knee and shoving it lightly. Hoseok looks up at the younger's chest and could see that the drool spot had indeed dried and was barely even noticeable unless you were looking specifically for it like Hoseok was.

 

"Hobi," Jungkook's soft voice comes, triggering sudden memories of the last time Jungkook had used the nickname on him. A zing of electricity shoots up his arm from the contact on Jungkook's knee. "About what happened on the plane..."

 

Hoseok should say something. He should say something to brush it off. Show that it was nothing, that he hadn't actually been on the verge of a panic attack. That he hadn't been so scared that he neglected his duties.

 

But instead, Hoseok lets out a resigned sigh, "Is it too much to ask you not to tell headquarters and get me fired?"

 

Jungkook looked legitimately offended and upset by this notion, "Why would you think I would tell them that? I'm not a dick like that, Hoseok. I thought you knew that."

 

Hoseok sits up straighter, absolutely hating the betrayed look in Jungkook's eyes, "No, that's not what I meant. I didn't mean that you would do something like that to me, it's just that I didn't do my job and you could've been in danger had something happened and I would have--"

 

Jungkook stops Hoseok's hand midair, seeing as it had been flying about in the air madly with his attempt to explain, "Hoseok, you were shaking and looked like you were going to pass out any second from fear. I just didn't want you to be scared anymore--"

 

"But that's the thing, Jungkook, I'm not supposed to be scared," Hoseok tells him, suddenly getting serious. Jungkook must've seen it in his eyes because his focus on him was suddenly strong. "I'm not supposed to be the one who is looked after. I'm supposed to be looking after you. Protecting you. You are the important one here. Not me."

 

Jungkook's mouth was in a tight straight line and his eyes fluttered moving from side to side whilst he let out little huffs through his nose, "I can't believe you would say something like that."

 

"What?" Hoseok asks, brow furrowed and a light pounding starting in the back of his head.

 

"How can you say you aren't important?" Jungkook's eyes snap to his and the fire behind them makes Hoseok unintentionally lean back, "How can you say that I can't be worried about you? You are important to me, believe it or not, and I thought that you would've figured out by now that you are much more than just my stupid fucking bodyguard paid to protect me from non-existent danger."

 

It was like the entire supply of oxygen was sucked out of the cab. It was either that or Hoseok had just stopped breathing entirely.

 

What--what was Jungkook saying?

 

Jungkook's face was still stern as he spoke, "I thought we were friends. I guess I was wrong."

 

Hoseok snaps forward, "We are friends, Jungkook, that's not what I'm saying."

 

"Then what are you saying, huh?" Jungkook questions, a challenge in his voice, "Cause all I'm hearing coming out of your mouth is that your allowed to worry about me and by my 'friend' but I'm not allowed to be the same for you. Is it really that hard for you to believe that I was legitamately worried about you? Is it really that hard to believe that I actually care about you?"

 

Hoseok was struck dumb. He didn't know what to say. His voice was caught in a bubble in his throat, accumulating pressure with wanting to be released but not being able to. The cord between his brain and his throat had been severed and now there was no information being delievered to his mouth to say to Jungkook.

 

He hadn't know Jungkook had felt this way. He hadn't known...

 

Jungkook was watching him intently, waiting for an answer. It was clear that Hoseok was not going to get away without saying something to acknowledge him. But what was he to say?

 

"I'm..." Hoseok started, voice wobbly under the strength of Jungkook's fiery eyes, "I'm...sorry. I didn't think--I didn't realize that you..."

 

"Yeah, no fucking shit." Jungkook was still angry, that was for sure. Hoseok didn't know what to say to appease the situation. What could he say to let Jungkook know that--

 

It hit him then. He actually did want Jungkook to care about him. He wanted Jungkook to think of him like that. It actually felt nice to know that Jungkook had cared about him enough to help him through everything that happened on the plane...but that didn't mean he wanted Jungkook to see him that weak.

 

Yet, Jungkook wasn't trying to use that weakness against him. He wasn't making fun of him for being afraid to fly; he hadn't even done any of that when he found out that he was afraid of bugs and everything else--and he knew Jungkook knew of all those fears he had.

 

He had never said a word about them. Never said anything like Hoseok was lesser for fearing what he did.

 

Trust was a two way street and so was friendship...so was any relationship really. Maybe this was what Hoseok's problem had been for so many years. He kept everyone at arms length. He never let anybody in too deep because he was scared that whatever they might find there would drive them away

 

He wanted to let Jungkook in. He did. He didn't know why, but it was true and he found himself wanting to tell the boy everything. He wanted to tell him all about the hardships he had gone through in his life. He wanted to tell him about everything he was scared of and everything he hated. He wanted to tell him about what wished for every night before he went to sleep and everything he prayed for.

 

Maybe now was the time to stop keeping Jungkook at arms length.

 

"Thank you," Hoseok eventually says, head hanging down and hands squeezing together in his lap, "for helping me...I..."

 

Jungkook looks back to him, face slightly less hostile and waiting for him to continue, "I...I have a hard time with heights. Especially with planes...and...and I just didn't want you to see that side of me."

 

If anything Jungkook scoots closer, waiting for more. "I know that I'm supposed to be your bodyguard but...maybe...if you want..."

 

"Yes?" Jungkooks looks at him with hopeful shining eyes. Hoseok is momentarily distracted by something else in the younger's eyes but he ignores it in favor of going back to what he was originally saying, "Maybe we could just...forget that I'm supposed to be your bodyguard. At least...when it's just the two of us."

 

It didn't seem to be exactly what Jungkook wanted, but the younger seemed to accept it.

 

"Okay," Jungkook nods.

 

"Okay," Hoseok reiterates, glad that some of the tense atomsphere had somewhat dispersed. The two of them sit side by side in the small backseat of the cab. Hoseok's hand lay resting in between them and Jungkook's mirrored his on his own side.

 

Ever so slowly, the younger's hand slides over and wraps around the top of Hoseok's. It was warm--a gesture of peace. Hoseok was still facing away, as was Jungkook who was looking out of the window on his side. Even still he had to turn his head to try to hide the smile that had overtaken his face.

 

He squeezes Jungkook's hand back. He doesn't see the equally as happy smile on the younger's face being reflected in the window.

 

******************

 

"Hobi, I don't think this is the White House," Jungkook tells him, staring at the busy street in front of them. They had gotten out of the cab, despite not seeing the White House anywhere in sight. Neither of them had understood what the taxi driver had been saying to them but they heard 'White House' and 'walk' so they figured that wherever they were, they were in walking distance of where they needed to be.

 

Or at least they hoped.

 

"I think I can arrange a ride from here," Hoseok says, "If we're really that close then it shouldn't be a problem to send someone out for a few moments to pick us up and take us back, right?"

 

Jungkook shrugs his shoulders. He wasn't really that sure. At the moment he was just fine to do whatever. He didn't even really want to be here so he honestly did not give a fuck whether they made it on time to the President's daughter's birthday or not. It was evening time by now, them having wasted their entire day trying to find their way around the area where they were at. They were attracting stares, two men with suitcases walking around in circles with no clue as to where they were going.

 

"I don't know," Jungkook answers honestly, "They rejected us last time so what's to stop them from using the same excuse this time?"

 

Hoseok didn't dignify him with an answer. "Let me just try."

 

"You're actually really close," he was told through the phone at his ear, "if you keep walking you should find it soon enough. Come up to security and someone will let you in."

 

Hoseok hung up, exasperated.

 

He turned to Jungkook, "I can't believe they are leaving us to find our own way. I know you're not exactly VIP but you're still the President's family and I can't believe they care so little about that."

 

Jungkook just shrugs. He was used to this kind of treatment. "It's fine, Hobi. Let's just start walking."

 

Pretty soon, they were lost.  Again.

 

"I thought you said that it was this way!" Jungkook says, glancing at Hoseok's phone, "Is this GPS accurate?"

 

"How am I supposed to know?" Hoseok asks, "This is America not Korea, I have no idea how anything works here. Even the streets are designed differently!"

 

"Maybe we should just ask for directions," Jungkook suggests. Hoseok looks like he wants to argue but if Jungkook was here willing to forgo his pride in order to get where they needed to be then surely Hoseok could do the same thing.

 

"Come on, hyung. Foreigners aren't that intimidating." Jungkook says with a slight laugh, thinking to himself that maybe if he could get Hoseok to laugh, it would relieve some of the tension in his shoulders.

 

"Easy for you to say, you aren't shorter than literally everyone in this country," Hoseok mumbles.

 

Jungkook throws his head back in a swift laugh, "You are pretty short."

 

"Excuse you. At least I'm taller than Jimin," Hoseok argues.

 

"That's not saying much, Hobi, everyone on Earth is taller than Jimin."

 

"God, I so wish he was here so he could drop kick your ass," Hoseok grumbles.

 

"He couldn't even try," Jungkook laughs.

 

"Well then, I'll --"

 

"You wouldn't dare, " Jungkook speaks up, too much confidence in his voice. Hoseok suddenly stops and swivels around so fast, getting straight up in Jungkook's face so close that Jungkook has to take a surprised step back.

 

"You wanna bet?" Hoseok eyes his face, sweeping over it in a way that almost left the ghost of his touch on him. Eyes burning intense and deep to the point where Jungkook was sure he would've been drawn forward had not his body's reaction been to automatically step back.

 

"You said you didn't want any special treatement..." Hoseok breathes hotly at him, "So there's nothing stopping me for dropping you to the floor at any moments notice."

 

Jungkook gulps, the idea sounding actually...exciting. His gaze moved from Hoseok's eyes down to his lips before refocusing back on his eyes--eyes that were way too close to his.

 

Jungkook was too stunned to even move even though every muscle was screaming at him to move closer, and when he doesn't make a single sound, Hoseok takes that as a win. "That's what I thought."

 

Hoseok leaves him standing there in heated silence as he walks away to go talk to a random stranger. They both seemed to struggle--Hoseok with communicating himself and the stranger with understanding him--but then the stranger points out some directions for him and Hoseok walks back to where Jungkook was still glued to the same spot.

 

"We need to walk down this street and make a left and then continue down and eventually well walk past the White House," Hoseok informs him, "I'm assuming that we'll have to walk around until we find the visitors entrance but I don't think we're that far away now. You ready to go?"

 

Jungkook snaps out of his daze, nodding his head, "What? Y-Yeah..."

 

"Then let's go." Jungkook follows beside him and tries his best to not let their hands brush as they walked together. The one time they did, he felt his skin sting and then he had made the executive decision to shove his hand into his pocket.

 

They walked for a short time and before they knew it, they had found exactly what they were looking for.

 

"Wow," Hoseok lets out an impressed noise. It was a really pretty building, even Jungkook had to agree. Jungkook took out his phone and took a bunch of pictures. He wished he remembered to pack his DSLR camera. That one always took the best pictures. He only had time to get his phone but he was grateful to even take pictures at all. He took so many, and not all of the White House. He took pictures of the trees surrounding them and the park they had walked past and the sun coming in through the clouds.

 

Hoseok laughs at him, "You look like a tourist."

 

"We are tourists!"

 

"No we aren't, we are guests, " Hoseok says pointedly, "Visitors. We aren't taking any tours."

 

"Who said you have to be a tourist to take pictures?" Jungkook asks, hunching his shoulders.

 

"Guess you have a point there," Hoseok shrugs. Jungkook smirked to himself. He was a petty little bastard, even he could admit that, and he liked it when he won arguments.

 

"Of course I do," Jungkook says, "I'm the brains of this duo."

 

Before Hoseok even has a chance to aruge, Jungkook pulls him forward and turns the both of them around so that their backs were to the White House and their fronts were facing Jungkook's camera, "Say 'kimchi'"

 

Immediately, Hoseok snaps into super model mode, posing away for the camera. Jungkook laughs loudly, twisting his face into various positions, taking pictures. Pretty soon, they shifted from aesthetic photos to downright silly pics. Hoseok's face contorts into some of the most hilarious faces he had ever seen, making him break his focus on his own faces most of the time since he was too busy laughing. They pucked their lips at the camera and Jungkook even did aegyo because Hoseok insisted.

 

They shifted from taking two million photos with this one face that they both found hilarious (and Jungkook had even invented a dance to go along with), to climbing all over each other. They puffed their cheeks and they crossed their eyes and Jungkook even got super close to the camera and looked off into the distance while Hoseok made the single most judgey face in the background. There was a picture where Hoseok sniffed his hair like a creeper and another one where Jungkook squished Hoseok's face to the point where it didn't even look like his face.

 

But the funniest picture they took had to have been the one where Hoseok tried his best to look like a meme while Jungkook pretended he was gonna lick his ear. He was still laughing at that picture as he scrolled through his camera roll as they walked around the side to finally make their way to the opening entrance of the White House and get where they needed to be.

 

It was a hot day in America and Hoseok had bought an ice cream sandwhich and handed it over for Jungkook to bite into it as they walked. They had finished it by the time they reached the security entrance.

 

It was a struggle getting in through security. The guard couldn't understand them at all and neither of them could understand the guard either. In the end, the guard had called in one of their on-staff Korean translators (since they had them on standby for their President). They got everything explained and eventually they got inside to the guest residences.

 

They checked in with the South Korean secret service as well as got cleared by the American secret service. Then they were on there way. Jungkook had wanted to speak to his father but they had been informed that both the Presidents were away at a meeting and the rest of Jungkook's family were out. That left Jungkook and subsequently Hoseok with nothing to do as they waited for the birthday party to start.

 

"So," Hoseok asks, "Is there anywhere in particular you wanted to go or anything you wanted to do while in America?"

 

Jungkook shrugs, "I don't know much about what to do here but I mean, I guess it would be nice to see some of the sights."

 

Hoseok lifts an eyebrow, "Yeah? Like what?"

 

"I heard the Washington Monument is pretty. Especially at night," Jungkook suggests. He'd seen some pictures online and thought the water looked really pretty, "that's the one with the really tall thingy in the air right?"

 

Hoseok snorts, "'Really tall thingy'? Such wonderful diction, Jungkook."

 

"Did you just call me a dick?" Jungkook sits up straighter, looking at Hoseok with demanding eyes.

 

"No, that's not what that word means--"

 

Jungkook doesn't let him finish, "Doesn't matter, you still called me a dick. Expect revenge because it'll be sprung on you when you least expect it."

 

Hoseok sighs, looking done. Jungkook doesn't get too disheartend though. Hoseok still has that upward quirk to his mouth meaning he was actually not irritated with Jungkook whatsoever. In fact, he was in a rather good mood. 

 

"Promises, promises," Hoseok murmurs under his breath so quietly that Jungkook had to strain to hear.

 

"What was that?"

 

"Nothing."

 

"Now who's the dick?" Jungkook shoots at him.

 

"So you agree?" Hoseok asks.

 

"What?"

 

"You think you were a dick?"

 

"Did you just quote Mean Girls at me?!" Jungkook's jaw drops. This bitch did not.

 

"You're the one who understood the reference right away, Mr. I-Don't-Enjoy-Chick-Flicks," Hoseok laughs.

 

Jungkook grumbles quietly, not having a comeback for once in life. Hoseok squeals with glee and Jungkook only minimally wants to punch him in the face.

 

****************

 

In the end, the birthday party ends up being a regular old boring dinner party. Hoseok didn't know if he was expecting anything any different seeing as a bunch of old fart politicans were attending. Maybe he was secretly hoping that the Americans would throw a wild rager. Maybe that would've been more entertaining, rather than just standing in the corner watching Jungkook mingle lightly with other politicians through a translator.

 

Jungkook comes back up to his side and his eyes looked tired.

 

"Are all political parties this boring?" Hoseok asks.

 

"Unless you have a pool on your roof that you can escape to then yes. They're all boring as shit." Jungkook says, alluding back to the Gala they had gone to several months ago where they had snuck up to the roof and discovered the pool there. Then the proceeded to fall in and tried to drown each other in the water. It had all been good fun until it had turned into something else. Even thinking about it now caused a stirring in Hoseok's stomach that translated up to his face, making it warmer.

 

Hoseok looks over to where the rest of Jungkook's family had sat, chatting with other guests. To the American President's left there sat his daugher. She looked bored out of her mind as well. Hoseok wondered if maybe this was just a formal birthday celebration and that she got to have an actual birthday party with people who she knew and wanted to celebrate with at another time.

 

Or was she like Jungkook with limited freedom as well? The thought made Hoseok's lips turn down at the sides. Thinking about that never failed to make Hoseok frown.

 

It was a little bit later into the party when they were approached by someone they least expected.

 

"Hello," the American President's daughter said to them in perfect Korean, "My name is Elizabeth. Nice to meet you."

 

She bowed her head to them and Jungkook and Hoseok were left to stare in shock.

 

Jungkook was the first to speak, "You speak Korean?"

 

She nods her head, holding up her fingers a little space apart, "A little. I am studying Korean. For...3 years now."

 

Hoseok didn't know if he was allowed to speak to the other guests, but he couldn't help but let out a noise of awe, "Wow. You're really good!"

 

All of the translators that had been hired for the White House had been Korean Americans who knew fluent Korean because of their family backgrounds. The American President's family was not Korean, in fact, Hoseok believed they were Mexican American. Hoseok wondered what compelled the President's daughter to learn Korean but he didn't say a word.

 

She smiles nicely at them, "Thank you. How do you like America?"

 

Jungkook had been slightly intimidated but had quickly lost all of his shyness when he realized that the President's daughter was actually really kind and spoke Korean, "It's really nice. I like the food."

 

She laughs and to Hoseok's surprise she and Jungkook continue to host a decent conversation. Hoseok soon realizes that this wasn't a conversation he was meant to be included in. To the Americans, he was just Jungkook's bodyguard. Hell, even to the Koreans here, he was just Jungkook's bodyguard. He wasn't anything to Jungkook according to anyone else and as much as Hoseok wanted to take a relaxed approach to the interactions with the Americans, he couldn't. It would look...suspicious. Unprofessional.

 

But that doesn't stop Hoseok from standing by Jungkook's side the entire time and listening to the conversation. It was slightly limited seeing as the American President's daughter knew quite a lot but wasn't exactly fluent. It was extremely impressive though and Hoseok could've sworn at one point within the conversation he noticed Jungkook's eyes give a glint of something unsettling. It looked almost like interest.

 

Hoseok had felt an uncomfortable prick at his chest upon realizing what exactly he was seeing. No, it couldn't be that...Jungkook liked the President's daughter? It was entirely possible that Jungkook was just being extra friendly with her seeing as they were basically in the same positon. But if Hoseok was being honest, he didn't like the way the President's daughter was smiling at Jungkook.

 

Hoseok, stop. You're being fucking crazy, he thought to himself. He had no reason to be feeling this...concern, about Jungkook and Elizabeth. Just because Jungkook had busted out his flirty charming ways and was thoroughly charming the pants off the girl in front of them, didn't mean that Jungkook could possibly be into her. Jungkook didn't like girls. Or maybe he did and just didn't ever specify that to Hoseok before. It's not like he had to but Hoseok had just assumed that Jungkook was strictly into men. And he was into guys...right?

 

What do you mean 'right'? Get a grip of yourself, he scolded himself. Whatever this stirring of his stomach acid was being caused by, Hoseok was starting to realize that it was something he knew he should not be feeling. Especially not towards Jungkook.

 

Regardless of how he should be feeling, he couldn't shake the notion that this girl was encroaching on territory where she shouldn't be. And to make it even worse, there was a twinge of annoyance aimed at Jungkook for insinuating too.

 

Hoseok's stomach almost rolled when he realized what he sounded like right now.

 

He gripped his hands together tightly, fingernails pressing into his skin. The sharp prickles of pain kept him level headed and reminded him not to let his mind get too far away from him. He was still here to do a job.

 

And that's what Hoseok threw himself into headfirst. He completely ignored the conversation going on between the two in front of him and instead focused on his training. Look to the left, then the right, then the middle. Search for suspicious people. Hoseok lets out a breath. The only suspicious people in the room were the ones who were doing the exact same things as him--the other secret service agents. Nothing paritcularly arousing him of danger.

 

Soon enough the birthday party ended and Hoseok couldn't have been more relieved. People began to file out and pretty soon it was just those who were currently staying in the White House. The American President and President Jeon had slipped away to talk along with Junghyun following behind them soon enough. The American first family were quick to leave, as had Jungkook's mother who had gone back to their quarters where they were staying for the weekend.

 

Jungkook had tried to catch his father before he left but in the end he had been snubbed and instructed to go back to his room. They would be given instructions for their plans to go home tomorrow.

 

On their way back to the room where Jungkook was assigned to stay, Hoseok began to notice the steam lifting from Jungkook's head.

 

Hoseok wanted to reach out to touch Jungkook's elbow, but something was telling him that might not be a good idea right about now. Jungkook was on edge, that so much was clear in his body language and the way his hands kept twitching in and out of a fist.

 

Hoseok couldn't just let it go, however. Jungkook was obvious upset about something. Maybe it wasn't exactly Hoseok's job to ask him, but Hoseok didn't really care. He wanted to know not because it was his job, but because he didn't like it when Jungkook was agitated. It wiped the sparkling smile off his face and turned his shining eyes hard like coal.

 

One glance into Jungkook's eyes and Hoseok could tell that that coal had been set alight and was soon to erupt into flames.

 

"Jungkook, what's wrong?" Hoseok ends up asking in the middle of an empty hallway on the way back to their room.

 

"Nothing."

 

The answer was short and curt and it hit Hoseok in all the wrong ways. Like hitting your funny bone that hurt more than made you laugh.

 

He had to tread lightly though. But then again, tact was never Hoseok's strong suit, "Jungkook, something's obviously wrong. You can talk to me, you know--"

 

The urge to touch him was too strong and Hoseok doesn't even realize his hand had made it's way onto Jungkook's inner elbow.

 

Jungkook yanks his arm back and Hoseok was pretty sure he had just been punched in the face. Jungkook had never been this abrupt with him since the very first day they met. And that had only been because Jungkook had gotten the wrong impression of him and had quickly changed.

 

Something was really wrong. Jungkook had barely concealed rage burning behind his eyes and Hoseok was legitimately starting to worry now.

 

"Jungkook--"

 

"I'm fucking sick and tired of this bullshit, Hoseok!" Jungkook spits as Hoseok flinches in response. His jaw was clenched and his chest was heaving, "They think it's alright to drag me all over the fucking world and put us out of our way. They make us find our way here on our own, not even bothering to contact me even once to see if we had got here okay or if we were on our way. And when we get here, what the fuck do they do? They ignore me the entire night."

 

Shit, Hoseok thinks. This was really, really not good.

 

Jungkook's face looked on the brink of exploding, boiling bubbles popping up in him like liquid magma.

 

"Jungkook, I'm sure they didn't mean to--" Hoseok does something stupid and tries to reach for Jungkook again. The second his fingertips touch the boy's skin, he jerks back like Hoseok had burned him.

 

"You don't know them, Hoseok!" Jungkook yells, voice echoing down the halls of the eerily empty walkway. "Honestly why the fuck should I let them keep carting me around like a shackled doll on display when they obviously don't give a flying fuck about me!"

 

What the hell had brought this on? Hoseok always knew these feelings were bubbling under the surface but he didn't know why Jungkook was deciding to blow his top now of all times.

 

"Jungkook, why are you doing this now?" Hoseok couldn't help but ask, risking Jungkook getting angrier, but needing to take the risk anyway, "It's been like this for years, why now--"

 

"Because!" Jungkook screams, eyes starting to brim with angry tears. Fuck, fuck, fuck. Anxiety was rising in Hoseok, like he was the one at fault here when he obviously wasn't but even still seeing Jungkook--someone who was usually so calm and collected and resolved--blow up and almost start to cry with anger it made Hoseok feel like it was directed at him. "Do you know what Elizabeth and I talked about?"

 

Hoseok jerks back. Elizabeth? The American President's daughter? Why was Jungkook bringing this up now? What did she have to do with any of this?

 

"What does she have to do with--?"

 

"I asked her about it," Jungkook fidgits with embarrasment but it's easily overshadowed by the hurt in his eyes, "I asked her what her life was like here, in the White House, being the President's daughter. I asked her if she was homeschooled and if she was kept holed up in the White House all day long. I asked her what it was like to be the 'child of the President'."

 

Jungkook says it as if he himself wasn't a child of their very own President. In a sense, it was almost like he wasn't. Still the bitterness dripping from Jungkook's every word seeped into Hoseok's heart and made him feel like dry heaving up his throat to get rid of this absolutely hellish feeling.

 

"Jungkook..." Hoseok says slowly. He had no idea that the two had been talking about that the whole time. Hoseok regrets being so stupid as to zone out of their conversation. It was his own mixture of messed up jealousy and irritation that had caused him to completely tune out Jungkook and his conversation with pretty much his American counterpart. He'd fucked up big time. He hadn't forseen how much trouble this encounter was going to cause.

 

Jungkook wasn't finished, "Do you have any idea what it feels like to hear her talk about her family life? Sure, she gets dragged to functions but her family lets her live her life. She has friends and a boyfriend and a social life and a job, Hoseok; she works a job at the same time as attending her university. She actually has a life!"

 

Hoseok could feel his legs starting to get wobbly. He knew that Jungkook desperately wanted to get a job of his own and provide for himself. One time when they had gone on a walk together they had talked about careers and aspirations and what Jungkook wanted to do with his life. He had asked Hoseok if he had grown up always wanting to be a bodyguard. Hoseok had answered honestly. No. In return, Jungkook had confided in him that he wanted to be a writer. But then had bitterly stated that that was a dream he knew he would never get to achieve. It wasn't what was expected of him. In his family, it was government position or bust, no ifs ands or buts.

 

"And why?" Jungkook asks rhetorically, "because she's the President's daughter. Well, what am I then, huh? Why the fuck is Junghyun allowed to be his son but I'm not, huh?!"

 

To be honest, Hoseok had wondered too, but it wasn't his place to question it. Apparently, Jungkook had been questioning it too. God, this situation was just so fucked up and made absolutely no sense whatsoever.

 

"I'm fucking done, Hoseok, I'm done with this bullshit," and then Jungkook turns around and takes off down the hall, speeding away like a man on a mission.

 

"Jungkook!" Hoseok takes off after him, breaking out into a run to chase after him for the second time since they met. "Where are you going?!"

 

"I'm going to find out what the fuck his excuse is, because I don't think he has one!" Jungkook fires back, running down this hall and that.

 

He slows down slightly, looking to his right and his left before turning down another hall.

 

Hoseok catches up, trying to grab ahold of Jungkook's shoulder, "Jungkook, calm down. Let's just think this out for a minute."

 

"I've thought this out for years, Hoseok," Jungkook says through gritted teeth, yanking himself out of Hoseok's hold again, "I'm not waiting another god damn minute."

 

He turns down another hall.

 

"You don't even know where your father is right now!" Hoseok tries to argue, trying his best to show Jungkook some reason. Yes, this situation was fucked up and Jungkook deserved answers but he couldn't just be running around searching for a fight. That was sure to end in flames. "We don't know our way around--"

 

"Were bound to find it eventually," Jungkook argues. He turns down another hall.

 

"Jungkook," Hoseok tries again, his legs working to keep up with the taller man's who were speed walking all over the place, "We need to think this out, okay? I agree you shouldn't have to deal with this anymore, but we should really--"

 

He almost rams straight into Jungkook's back. He lets out a squeak and opens his mouth to question why the man in front of him had suddenly stopped hulking down the hall, when he spots the open door to their left.

 

They were standing off to the side, so the inhabitants couldn't exactly see them, but Hoseok and Jungkook could see the two men perfectly. It was obviously a study of some kind and inside Jungkook's father and brother were talking loud enough to the point where their voices reached Jungkook and Hoseok's ears loud and clear.

 

"Father, why do you keep bringing him to these functions? You know that all it does is stir up rumors! They keep asking me who he is! Do you honestly think they believe the 'distant nephew' excuse? They aren't morons, he looks just like you! Which is exactly why he shouldn't be here. He has no place here," Junghyung's loud, outraged voice comes. Neither men had any idead that Jungkook and Hoseok were standing right outside hearing their every word.

 

"He is your brother, Junghyun, of course he should come with us." The President defends. "Jungkook needs to be at these functions so he knows what it will be like to go into the family business. Both of you are my sons and both of you should be here with me."

 

"He may be your son," Junghyun's voice was harsh; venomous," but he's not my brother!"

 

"Watch your mouth!" Hoseok had never heard that kind of threatening, sharp tone used by the President before and based off Jungkook's frozen look of shock on his face, he never had either.

 

Junghyun's face turns dark, looking at his father with narrowed, black eyes filled with resentment and contempt.

 

"As long as his blood is tainted with that of a woman who is not my mother then I will never accept him as my brother," the air was stark quiet, every molecule burning at their skin like steam, "I've had enough of your trying to cart him around like he's a regular member of this family when he's not. If you wish to keep any legitmacy to your name and your administration then you'd best get rid of your illegitmate son."

 

It was like a gunshot had gun off. Without Hoseok even realizing it Jungkook had picked up a glass flower container from a nearby table and thrown it in directly at the door, smashing it into a million tiny pieces.

 

If Jungkook's father and brother hadn't known they were there before, they certainly knew now, both of them jumping back and flinching hard from the scare of the glass shattering loudly. Junghyun's face was surprised but the contempt was still there. 

 

Jungkook's father on the other hand looked horrified--horrified and guilty--to see Jungkook standing there; breathing hard with wet burning tears streaming down his face as his chest heaved as he tried in vain to breathe. Jungkook's hands were shaking so badly and Hoseok felt like an outsider watching from the outside and absolutely helpless to do anything. 

 

Hoseok was left to stand in complete shock, his mouth agape.

 

"Jungkook--" his father tried to croak out, face terrified and ashamed. He tries to take a step forward towards them.

 

Jungkook takes a crumbled step backwards, his eyes wide and filled to the brim to the point where Hoseok wondered if his vision was imparied. "N-No..."

 

"Jungkook, please let me explain--" his father tries desperately. 

 

"N-No...no, fuck you! Fuck you and fuck this entire family!" Jungkook screams, as he stares at the ground and looks like he was about to throw up or pass out. Or both. When his father tries to take another strangled step forward, Jungkook takes two more steps backwards, almost tripping over his own feet. At the drop of a hat, he spins on his heels and sprints away as fast as he could.

 

"Jungkook!" Hoseok calls out, starting to run after him, but stopping once he realizes that the boy was already long gone with no way for Hoseok to follow him.

 

He stops in the middle of the hallway, staring after the missing figure of the boy who had carved a gaping hole in his chest. 

 

Things were never going to be the same again. 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Someone approaches him from behind.

 

Hoseok whips around as a voice says, "My father wishes to speak to you."

 

Hoseok locks eyes with Junghyun and in that moment Hoseok swears all he wants to do is rip this mans balls off and feed it to him. Hoseok blood was boiling as he stared at this man--the one who had absolutely smashed Jungkook's heart into a million tiny glass shards.

 

But he wasn't the only one at fault. In fact, the other one wanted to speak to him, but Hoseok was too busy feeling upset for Jungkook to acknowledge it.

 

He couldn't help it, the words bubbling up in his throat and bursting out, "You know, you're a real piece of--"

 

"I'd watch it if I were you," Junghyun snaps, shutting Hoseok up immediately. "Jungkook is nobody. And because he's nobody he can't protect your ass from getting fired right alongside the others. So, I'm only going to tell you one last time before you do something you regret. Don't. fucking. mess with me. Got it?"

 

And with that, Junghyun walks away, turning down the opposite hall and away from the lounge where President Jeon was waiting to talk to him.

 

Every muscle in his body was telling him to turn around and bolt--to go find Jungkook. Fuck the President, he had ruined Jungkook's life. Why should he talk to him? He needed to go to Jungkook; he needed to make sure the boy was alright even though Hoseok already knew he absolutely wasn't.

 

Even still his feet dragged him into the lounge where the President was surrounded by broken shattered glass on the floor. A solid crystal glass of whiskey was in one large hand while his head rested in his open other palm.

 

"Mr. President?" Hoseok calls out lightly. The man lifts his head up and Hoseok twitches.

 

The man before him looked so tired. Like he had aged 10 years in 10 seconds before Hoseok's very eyes. He had to make a conscious effort to not let his mouth drop open in a gape.

 

"Ah yes," President Jeon grasps his hand on his knee, "You're Jung Hoseok, right? Jungkook's bodyguard?"

 

Hoseok nods his head, gulping before answering. "That's correct, sir."

 

The older man gestures to the seat in front of him. "Please take a seat."

 

Hoseok knows he probably shouldn't be ignoring the President's words, but at the moment was just a bit too antsy to sit down. "I think I would like to stay standing, if you don't mind."

 

He didn't say anything about wanting to be ready at a moment's notice just in case he was given permission to dart off in search of Jungkook. Even right now, he felt himself being pulled closer to the door. On the other hand, maybe sitting down would stop him from just booking it right now.

 

He stood his ground.

 

The President lets out a noise of acceptance, "Alright then. Please do what makes you the most comfortable."

 

"Mr. President, what is this about?" Hoseok asks, getting directly to the point. He already knew what this was about but he needed to get the ball rolling quickly. Every moment standing here without getting to the point was a moment when he was leaving Jungkook to suffer on his own.

 

The President sighs, a sound so desolate that Hoseok almost felt sorry for the man. "He heard all of it, didn't he?"

 

"Yes," Hoseok answers immediately, knowing exactly what the president was referring to, "He did."

 

The man sets his drink down on the table beside him, using both hands now to rub his tired face. He lets out a groan, "God, he shouldn't have found out that way. I have no idea where Junghyun gets his attidtude from."

 

Hoseok snorts, "You don't?"

 

Hoseok immediately regrets doing that, fearful he might've offended the President but in the end the older man lets out a weak laugh and rolls his eyes, "Alright, I admit it. You're right. I do."

 

Hoseok doesn't smile, although he does see the wicked irony in it all. He crosses his arm.

 

"No. He really shouldn't have found out that way," Hoseok says in response to the first statement and the more important one. The President nods, hanging his head.

 

"I just..." he sucks in his bottom lip, a gesture that Hoseok had seen Jungkook do many many times whenever he felt anxious. Apparently his father also did it when he was feeling anxious and guilty, "I didn't want to hurt him. I wanted to protect him."

 

Hoseok lets out a long sigh, "Mr. President, if you would allow me to say a few words that might come out as rude?"

 

The President nods, telling him to go ahead.

 

"You were hurting him even more by not telling him," Hoseok says, not knowing where he was getting the bravery from, "You were hurting him every day just by pushing him away and making him believe that you didn't see him as your son."

 

"But I do!" The President's voice raises, desperate almost to make Hoseok see, "I do see him as my son; he is my son. I love him."

 

Hoseok looks down, avoiding looking at the President. The subject seemed to shift to something more personal and Hoseok wasn't exactly sure this was what the President was trying to say to him.

 

"Everyone has that one person they want so much," the syllables curve around the President's lips like a memory, one he had on the tip of his tongue for ages but has never said, "That person they want to be with so much...who brightens your world and for who you would do anything just to see them smile...."

 

Hoseok felt like he was being crushed in by a falling sky. He didn't want to be hearing these words from the President. He didn't want to be feeling a scary sense of empathy with these words. He couldn't be understanding ever word he was saying like he had experienced it all himself.

 

"...But there's always something keeping you apart," the President's eyes go glassy, a far away look in them like he was remembering a memory or multiple, "Who you are or...who you're not..."

 

There was a lump in Hoseok's throat. His breaths were becoming harder to regulate.  He had to be careful now.

 

"Jungkook was such a beautiful baby who turned into a such a beautiful young man," the President says with a smile, "He has so much of her in him. The only bit of her I have left and I just can't bring myself to think about all the pain I've caused him. I just wanted to protect him. I just wanted him to not have that same kind of life as me. A life where you must always do what your family reputation requires and never act on anything for yourself. "

 

Jungkook's life had just been taken and pushed around. It was set up for failure from even before he was born. It was always out of his hands, never his to choose. Hoseok could feel himself already leaving his body from where he was standing and drifting out to search for the signals of the younger reaching out for him.

 

"But..."

 

Hoseok looks up at the vulnerable man before him. It wasn't even like he was talking to the President of his country anymore. It was like he was talking to another person, human being to human being.

 

"My moment of weakness actually was the moment I felt the most strength in my entire life."

 

Hoseok didn't know what to do. He couldn't find words in himself, all he felt was an uncontrollable urge to curl up in the corner and just rock back and forth.

 

"Maybe..." the words get caught in Hoseok's dry throat. He clears his throat, "Maybe you should be saying these things to him and not to me."

 

The man nods, clasping his hands together. "I'm not sure how I could face him now. He hates me. I've failed as a father."

 

"You haven't failed until you've given up. You haven't failed until you no longer care that your actions affect your son. As long as you still care about him and are doing your best to do what's right for him then you haven't failed," Hoseok blurts. The President locks eyes with him for the first time throughout the whole conversation.

 

And then the man actually gives him a genuine smile. It was bogged down by the gravity of the situation, but it was an actual smile. That of appreciation and maybe even gratitude.

 

"Perhaps you're right."

 

Hoseok looks back down again, not being able to take the intensity of the man's gaze. There's was something there--something heavy, something knowing.

 

"You should go to him."

 

Hoseok was probably getting whiplash from how much he was lifting and dropping his head. "What?"

 

"You care about him, I can see it," the man says with a knowing smile on his face. A look that Hoseok didn't want to know the meaning behind. "I'm glad he has someone like you by his side. Finding someone like that...it only happens once in a lifetime."

 

Hoseok was 100% sure he was sweating now. His hands ticking nervously by his side.

 

The President gives a stifled chuckle, seeing his reaction. "Go on now. If I can't go to him just yet, then I need to know that someone else has."

 

Hoseok bows deeply to the President before turning around and walking quickly out of the room.

 

He needed to find Jungkook but where could he be at this time of night? Hoseok was pretty sure that he wouldn't have stayed in the White House, probably having left the building to go somewhere where he could be well and truly alone.

 

But where?

 

Hoseok didn't exactly know what was in the area around the White House. This was his first time being here, he was pretty much a damn tourist. Luckily, the White House was also a tourist spot and not long after wandering around the place, he found a large framed map of the area hanging in one of the halls.

 

He looked at it, hating the fact that it was all in English and his English reading skills were absolute shit. Not as bad as Jungkook's, but still pretty fucking bad.

 

He thinks he was able to read a few bits and pieces of the words but then something sticks out to him.

 

The Washington Monument.

 

Hadn't Jungkook mentioned something earlier about wanting to visit the Washington Monument?

 

"I heard the Washington Monument is pretty. Especially at night."

 

Hoseok snaps his fingers. That place was near here, wasn't it? He looks back to the map. It was in walking distance for sure. That had to be where Jungkook went.

 

Hoseok takes off in a run.

 

He just hoped that Jungkook was actually there.

 

*************

 

Jungkook sat on the steps facing the water. He looked up at the monument in front of him and sighed. The moon was hanging high in the sky, the only other source of light in the area other than the lights at the base of the tower itself.

 

He almost wanted to get up and walk across the slight sidewalk and into the large body of water. He wondered if it got deeper the farther in you went. Maybe if he was able to dunk his head all the way down into the water, it would finally stop all the blood rushing in his ears. Maybe he would stop feeling his pulse uncomfortably strong in his wrists and in his head.

 

With every pulse, it made his headache worse.

 

Jungkook sniffs, swiping a hand under his cheek to capture the silent tears that were still fucking falling.

 

"I fucking hate everything," Jungkook curses under his breath. He didn't care how childish he sounded. He had the right to act like this every now and then and he was pretty sure that right now constituted one of those moments.

 

"Hopefully that doesn't include me?"

 

Jungkook startles, turning away from the familiar voice and quickly trying to hide any evidence that he had been crying.

 

His attempts at concealing himself were kind of useless seeing as Hoseok had seen him crying, but still. He didn't want to cry anymore. He didn't want to do anything anymore. He was so tired of life and all the pain it put him through.

 

Hoseok settles beside him on the steps.

 

The night air was cold despite the summer season in which the country was in. Jungkook hadn't factored that in when he stormed out of the White House and had just ran until he reached a place where he felt like he could sit down and think.

 

Hoseok was quiet until he says, "It really is pretty at night."

 

"How'd you know I was here?" Jungkook questions, trying his best to speak steadily.

 

Hoseok shrugs, "I remembered you said it earlier."

 

He remembered that little detail he mentioned once? Jungkook blinks his wet eyelashes for a few seconds. A warm lick of fondness grows in a chest and for a moment, he could almost forget the shitty evening he just had.

 

Jungkook knows he probably shoudn't, but he does it anyway. He scoots a little bit closer to Hoseok so instead of sitting slightly apart, their legs and knees were touching. Jungkook tries not to give away how suddenly nervous he was, so he leans foward, resting his chin on his open palms with his elbows on his knees.

 

"Jungkook--" Hoseok sighs out.

 

"Can we just--" Jungkook interrupts, "Can we just...not talk...for a few moments? I really don't feel like having another breakdown out here under the moonlight. How fucking cliche would that be?"

 

Hoseok lets out a soft snort, "Pretty fucking cliche."

 

But that's all he says. It's nice and quiet for a long time. It's peaceful. The wind blows slightly across his face and makes him shiver slightly, but the shiver feels nice. Calming almost. Or maybe it was just because Hoseok's heat was radiating into Jungkook and keeping his body temperature nice and neutral.

 

"I'm sorry about what happened earlier," Hoseok eventually says, seemingly unable to handle staying silent any longer.

 

Jungkook lets his back slouch, "Yeah, well... It's not like I wasn't aware that I wasn't welcome in this family."

 

"That's not true."

 

"Isn't it?" Jungkook asks, completely serious. "Cause that's what it's felt like my entire fucking life."

 

Hoseok goes quiet again, as if contemplating something. Jungkook doesn't turn to look at him. If he does, he knows he'll burst into the same painful tears again. Especially seeing the understanding look that Jungkook is absolutely sure Hoseok has on his face.

 

"Your father asked to talk to me," Hoseok says quietly, hesistantly, "After you left."

 

Jungkook flinches, "What?"

 

"He--...Well, we. We talked about some things," Hoseok tells him honestly, "About y-you."

 

Jungkook was motionless, surprised his tongue could even work to form the sounds. "About...me?"

 

"Yeah," Hoseok answers, "You. And...and about your mom. Your real mom."

 

Jungkook's lungs constrict, his nose failing to inhale an adequate amount of air. His breath was coming faster and an uncomfortable feeling was taking over his chest, making his skin itch. He tries to look back at the reflection of the moon on the water, watching the ripples and trying to count them. Anything that would take his focus away from what he was being told. He needed the distraction.

 

"My..." he barely managed to choke out, "My..."

 

"Your mom," Hoseok finishes for him. He sighs, "I don't know why your dad was telling me this when he should've been telling you, but I don't know, I guess spilling your biggest life regrets is easier to say to a stranger than to someone who you feel regretful towards."

 

A roll of nausea hits Jungkook in the chest, "He regrets...me?"

 

Hoseok is quick to jump and correct himself, "No! No, no, I mean that he feels regretful for what he did to you. About hiding everything from you. And more stuff about your mom, but once again, I really think he should've been the one telling you that. Not me."

 

The tears were fresh again. He swears under his breath, because he was trying so fucking hard not to cry again. He was so weak. The tears start rolling down his face in a race to fall off his face first. He couldn't help it. He wanted to stop crying but he couldn't stop them.

 

Hoseok must've heard the sniffs because he moves forward, turning Jungkook's torso towards him and wrapping him up in a hug. Jungkook allows himself to let go now. He lets his arms encompass Hoseok's shoulders, and cries into his neck. Hoseok holds him close, arms around his midsection. Jungkook tries to calm himself down but it wasn't working.

 

One of Hoseok's arms comes up and starts to brush through the hairs on the back of his head, trailing down his neck.

 

"It'll all be okay, Jungkookie," Hoseok whispers ever so lightly into Jungkook's ear. It sends tingles all throughout Jungkook's body and makes him squeeze Hoseok tighter to him, not even caring that his waist was straining slightly from the twist. "I'm here for you."

 

For the first time in his life, Jungkook realizes that Hoseok really was. After all these months that Hoseok had been there for him, Jungkook had never let it settle down deep in his gut that he really truly wasn't alone anymore. 

 

It felt so good to have Hoseok here by his side like this. 

 

Jungkook feels his breath stutter in his chest as he lets out a stuttered sigh. But then he relaxes into Hoseok's arms.

 

He didn't want to ever let him go.

 

But eventually Hoseok pulls him back and looks into Jungkook's face. He let's out a goodnatured chuckle, bringing his hands up to wipe the tears under Jungkook's eyes. Jungkook was sure he probably looked like a damn wreck--like an ugly drowned cat or something.

 

"Aigoo," he coos, bringing his hand back to rub his thumbs along the side of Jungkook's jaw, "My Jungkookie, still so pretty even when he cries."

 

Jungkook couldn't help but stare at Hoseok's smiling face. There was lingering wetness in his eyes and Jungkook notes the choked nature of Hoseok's voice. He realizes with a fluttering heart that Hoseok had been trying to hold back tears the entire time.

 

Hoseok's hands were still resting on Jungkook's neck and he wondered if Hoseok could feel how fast his pulse was beating as he looked deep into his eyes. Was it possible to read minds after staring so long into someone's eyes without breaking contact? If so, was it possible that Hoseok could see how much Jungkook really wanted to lean forward and kiss him right now?

 

They were so close that Jungkook could count the individual eyelashes that fluttered over Hoseok's eyes. He could see see the circles of the contact lenses in his eyes and count the small moles around his cheek. They were so close that Jungkook could feel that Hoseok had stopped breathing by the lack of the puffs of air on his skin.

 

He glances down at a heart shaped mouth.

 

"Hoseok," Jungkook leans forward and...

 

...rests his forehead against Hoseok's.

 

His heartbeat doesn't slow but Hoseok seems to let out a shaky breath.

 

"Thank you," Jungkook says ever so quietly.

 

"I didn't do anything," Hoseok says just as quietly. Hands sliding down from his neck to his shoulders and then down to his arms.

 

Jungkook is the first to pull back. He looks into Hoseok's face before shaking his head, "You're the only one who's been doing anything for me."

 

"That's not true," Hoseok squeezes his elbow, shaking him slightly, "I know someone else who has done just as much for you as me."

 

Jungkook snorts, "Oh yeah, who?"

 

Hoseok tilts his head to the side, bringing one finger up to rest under his chin, "Hmm, I wonder? He's the one who hired me?"

 

"Namjoon?" Jungkook asks.

 

Hoseok smacks his arm, "No, you idiot. He's the one who recommended me for the position in the first place."

 

".....Jimin?"

 

"Oh my god," Hoseok throws his hands up in exapersation, "It's you, idiot! I was all here trying to make a profound statement about you being the one to save yourself but congratulations you managed to turn my beautiful emotional moment into one of dumbassery."

 

Jungkook allows himself to give Hoseok an actual smile. The comical moment passes as he watches Hoseok's face, still set in that of wicked offence, irritated at Jungkook ruining his chance to be wise. He had turned back to look at the monument in front of them instead of at him. Jungkook seizes the opportunity to stare openly at the older.

 

"You really think so?" he asks, genuinely wondering if Hoseok felt like Jungkook was capable of saving himself.

 

Hoseok's head turns back to him slightly, and he uncrosses his arms. He then reaches over and grabs ahold of one of Jungkook's hands. He doesn't protest in the slightest as Hoseok then slips his fingers in between Jungkook's interlocking their hands.

 

He nods with a light smile, "I think that if you wanted to, you could march right back in to see your dad and demand the truth and an explanation. I think you could do anything you set your mind to."

 

Jungkook knows that Hoseok was speaking in hypotheticals but really his words sent a surge of electrical waves through his brain so powerful that they could light up a lightbulb.

 

He stands up, hand never leaving Hoseok's. He has no choice but to follow Jungkook as he stands up and pretty soon Hoseok is also on his feet. Hoseok was standing on a step just above his so instead of having to look down into his face, he could look straight into his eyes.

 

"Kookie, what--"

 

"If you really think I can do it, hyung," Jungkook interupts, stepping forward so that he was standing directly in front the older. It almost surprises him, the way he has to resist the urge to draw Hoseok closer. "Then I think I should go attempt to do something that I've only dreamed about doing for years."

 

Hoseok's face twists into a pleasantly surprised smile.

 

"Race you!" Hoseok calls out at the last second, taking off in a sprint, hand wrenching from his. Jungkook startles to life.

 

"No fair!" he screams after Hoseok and takes off like a bullet after him, the moonlight and the streetlights illuminating their way back.

 

******

 

 

Jungkook's steps were tentative as they walked back down the hallway where he had run from several hours before.

 

His hand was clasped tight in Hoseok's, squeezing more tightly with every step forward. "I don't think I can do this."

 

Hoseok stops him in the middle of the hallway. The silence from the lack of the clack of their shoes against the floor makes the wall automatically a million times quieter. Jungkook hopes that his anxious breathes weren't echoing off the walls.

 

"Hey," Hoseok brings his other hand up to reach for Jungkook's other hand. It falls just short of taking ahold. Jungkook wants to reach for him in return but he misses. At least one of his hands still held Hoseok's. "You can do this."

 

"I don't know," he was positive his anixety was obvious now, "I don't know, hyung. I-I-..."

 

This time Hoseok does grab his hand. It's grounding. "Hey, Kookie. Look at me."

 

Jungkook had been avoiding his eyes but at the insistence in Hoseok's voice, Jungkook finds himself compelled to obey. When he does, Hoseok looks like he knows exactly what's running through his mind at that moment.

 

"It's not easy to confront your past," he says quietly, glacing down, "It's fucking terrifying. You think your strong enough to handle it on your own, that you don't need to talk about it because there's nothing to talk about. What's done is done but there's no changing the past...I know, because unfortunately I've had to do this kind of thing"-- he huffs--"more than my fair share of times."

 

Jungkook feels the closest to Hoseok whenever he shares bits and pieces about his past. Hoseok was pretty much an enigma to Jungkook at this point. Sure, Hoseok would tell him stories of his childhood and his home back in Gwangju, but Jungkook knew very little about his recent past. He knew Hoseok had gone through a great deal of heartbreak with a few of his past ex's--something Jungkook could slightly relate too--but he had no idea of just how bad it was. Hoseok wasn't this unbreakable pillar of strength. He was fragile, like glass.

 

And Jungkook felt like glass about to shatter at any moment from the weight on top of him.

 

"But you gotta listen to me Jungkook," Hoseok says, with his sad brown eyes mirroring Jungkook's, "If you don't do this now, you'll never find the courage to do it again. And that'll be your biggest regret."

 

In times like these, it was when Jungkook truly acknowledged why Hoseok was the hyung. He knew just what to say to make Jungkook feel like he could maybe find the strength to keep moving forward.

 

He gulps, nodding at Hoseok to convey that he understood sense he doubted that his words would be adequate enough. They walk all the way back to the front of the door. It was closed and it was eerily quiet inside, with no noise wafting out however since both of them could see the soft light coming from under the door, they knew that his father was still inside.

 

"I'll be right here, Jungkookie," Hoseok murmurs. Jungkook stops, turning to him.

 

"Actually, hyung," Jungkook whispers, "If it's okay...could you possbily wait for me back in my room?"

 

Hoseok looks surprised, taking a step back. Jungkook feels the need the explain, "I just...I feel like I should do this on my own, you know?"

 

Hoseok actually smiles at this. He gives Jungkook's hand one last squeeze, "I'm proud of you, Jungkookie."

 

He pulls his hand slowly out of Jungkook's grip and at once, Jungkook wants to hold it again. His hand comes up momentarily to search for the warmth but Hoseok's hands are already by his side again. "I'll be waiting for you in your room."

 

Jungkook nods once and Hoseok gives him a reassuring smile one last time before he turns around and walks down the hallway. Jungkook watches his retreating figure as he turns the corner and walks off towards where Jungkook's lodging for the weekend had been assigned.

 

He has to force himself to turn back to the door.

 

You can do this, Jungkook, he thinks to himself. He took a few deep breaths, curling his hands into fists and closing his eyes for a moment before opening them again.

 

And then he knocks.

 

"Come in," a familiar deep voice comes from inside. Jungkook's heart was hammering against his ribs as he slowly opens the door with a creak.

 

His father was facing away from him. Jungkook has to clear his throat to get his attention.

 

"Ye--"

 

When his father locks eyes with him, his eyes widen and he is quick to get out of his seat. "Jungkook."

 

He sets his glass of alcohol down on the table. Jungkook wondered if it was the same one he had been nursing since earlier or if he had refilled up. Jungkook wouldn't blame him. Jungkook would kill for a drink at the moment too.

 

Standing in front of his father like this, Jungkook doesn't want to be here. He wants to turn and fling the door open and run back to his room and straight into Hoseok's comforting arms. But he stays where he is.

 

He doesn't care if he comes off as rude, instead he just keeps his mouth quiet as he walks around his father and takes a seat.

 

"Jungkook?" his father's aprehensive voice comes.

 

Jungkook glances up, "Hoseok told me some of what you said."

 

His father takes a step back with a nod, sitting down stiffly in his own seat. He didn't look surprised at all to hear that Hoseok had told him some of what they had talked about. "I see."

 

"I've come here to hear what you have to say," Jungkook say with a carefully controlled voice, "I really didn't want to but Hobi said--"

 

"'Hobi'?" His father's confused voice asks. Jungkook stiffens. Shit. He hadn't meant to say that.

 

"Uh..." Jungkook tries to come up with a quick excuse.

 

"Is that, Jung Hoseok--sshi?" his father asks, trying to make the situation lighter. Well, he had caught on fast.

 

Jungkook purses his lips, still slightly miffed, and trying to sit on his hands so that his father doesn't see his fidgiting hands, "Yeah. Hobi is Hoseok."

 

His father makes an 'ahh' sound, the tiniest of knowing smiles coming over his lips. Jungkook purposely ignores it for both of their sakes. 

 

"I will need to thank Hoseok-sshi," his father remarks. Jungkook eyes the older man with a strange look.

 

Jungkook sucks his bottom lip in, gnawing on it and trying not to just burst.

 

"Stop beating around the bush," Jungkook finally blurts, unable to take it anymore. He needed answers and he needed them now. He didn't want to wait anymore. He couldn't. "I think you owe me a straight explanation."

 

The look of shame is instantly back on his father's face. Jungkook feels a twinge of guilt in his gut. He didn't like being the one who caused his father pain. This was the man who raised him. The person who Jungkook loved most in this world...

 

But he needed answers. He couldn't keep living in a lie anymore. The time had finally come to stop living in the shadows. Both of them needed to stop hiding.

 

"Son..." his father starts, hands rubbing up and down on his knees. "I don't know what exactly Hoseok told you but--"

 

"He told me about my mother," Jungkook interupts, "My real mother."

 

"Oh. Well. I guess that's good then," his father murmurs, "I just wanted to say that...well, I want you to know I'm not trying to make excuses for myself. I know what horrible mistakes I've made in your life. I know that they're inexcusable, but you have to understand my reasons."

 

Jungkook shrugs his shoulders, "The road to hell is paved with good intentions."

 

"And I know that, Jungkook. Believe me, I do," his father tells him, "But you need to just know...I was doing it all to protect you. I'm a parent, a crappy one--"

 

"You weren't," Jungkook doesn't know where the words came from. He shocked even himself, but he wasn't taking the words back.

 

"What?"

 

"You weren't a crappy parent, Appa," Jungkook lets it go, pressure deflating out of his shoulders, "I loved you so much. Even still it's killing me being mad at you right now, because even though I felt so alone all these years, I knew that I at least had you. You, who was doing all of this for me...but I just can't understand it. I tried to understand it, but I don't--"

 

"Your mother was an artist. A dancer," his father states suddenly. Jungkook's mouth stops, words halting as he takes in his father's words, "She was from a decent family, neither rich nor poor. Probably middle class economically, but even still she lived a humble lifestyle her whole life. She never wanted to be a part of this lifestyle."

 

What?

 

Looking at his father's face, the emotion crumbling across his face was like watching an avalanche. Jungkook felt like he was being told the sky was falling and he was sitting here believing it.

 

"She tried to be something she wasn't. For me," his father's eyes go hazy, as if remembering something from a long time ago, "She tried to play the part of the politician's wife but..."

 

Pain flashes across his father's face, making Jungkook internally wince.

 

"She couldn't do it," his father says with a steely voice, "She was a free spirit. Strong. Fierce. And absolutely hilarious, this girl. She refused to take anyone's crap. She wasn't shy in the slightest to stand up and speak her mind or make a joke. She wasn't shy at all but I...I was the only one who could make her blush."

 

A small sad chuckle escapes his lips and a lump starts to form in Jungkook's throat. His brow furrows as his father continues to speak, "I loved her very much...and that's why I let her go."

 

Any words Jungkook might've had in his throat get caught.

 

"I let her go to live her life the way she wanted to. We lived seperate lives after this," his father explains, a far away look on his face, "She continued on with her life and I continued down my path towards becoming governer. I married Junghyun's mother and had your hyung..."

 

"But she's not my mother," Jungkook states although it was really formatted more like a question, "This other woman, the...woman you loved...she's my mother?"

 

His father looks up at him, eyes studying his face gently and deeply. Looking at him like he was looking into the past. He nods, "I saw her again about two decades ago. I know it sounds horrible but I mean it when I say I couldn't control myself. You'll know when you fall in love. It's like being in a room with artifical light...You think you can see fine and that that light is all you really need to get by. It's good enough, you tell yourself.  But then the sun rises and fills the room with natural light...and it's blinding and it's beautiful and it's so much more warm than you ever thought you'd ever feel again...you can't help but open the window."

 

Like the sun. Jungkook's mother had been like the sun to his father.

 

Jungkook thinks about his own personal sunshine. 

 

"Like I told your Hoseok, the moment that might've been considered my moment of weakness--making me a cheater; a liar; an adulterer, actually was actually the moment I felt the most strength in my entire life. That was the moment when I felt like I was finally making an honest person out of my pathethic existence."

 

Jungkook does nothing but stare, eyes wide and unmoving.

 

"She got pregnant," his father states, and then a smile breaks out on his face, "I should've been terrified--this could've ruined my career before it even started. Instead, I was ecstatic. Not only was I getting to have a child with her, but I got to become your father. The moment you were born was the happiest moment of my life."

 

His father's eyes were wet, shining with whispers of the overwhelming amount of love he had for both of them, "You remind me so much of her. You are so strong and resilient. I've put you through so much misery and you still stand your ground. You are so much like her that sometimes it pains me to think about..."

 

The words come out in a strangled squeak, "What--what happened to her...?"

 

The tears that were in his father's eyes change from nostalgic love to that of pained anguished love, "You have to understand something, Jungkook. Your mother was strong of heart and strong of spirit...but she was born with a heart condition."

 

"We had you checked and you were fine," his father says quickly, "It's not hereditary. For the first year of your life, she took care of you. I would come to visit you whenever I could, but my horrid schedule made it so difficult. Nevertheless, your mother was determined..."

 

"But...?"

 

"She died about two years after you were born," his father says with a low voice, anguished eyes turning into that of the same thick skinned mask Jungkook was used to, "Her condition had been worsening for years already, and there was nothing any of the doctors could do for her. If she wanted to treat it, she would need to be admitted into the hospital for long-term care. She couldn't do that because she had you to take care of and she couldn't do that in the hospital, but she refused to leave you alone."

 

Jungkook didn't even notice that tears were falling out of his own eyes. He doesn't realize until a wet droplet hits the back of his hand that he had pulled out from underneath him and had rested under his lap.

 

"We made arrangements for you to come live with me and the rest of this family..." his father says slowly, "She had gotten to the point where she physically couldn't take care of you anymore. She hated it so much, Jungkookie. She hated that she knew that she wasn't going to be able to see her only son grow up."

 

"So..." Jungkook mutters, "...she..."

 

"She made me promise her," his father tells him at last, "she made me promise to protect you with everything I had. Not just physically protect you, but protect you in every way. That included keeping you as far away from the life I lived as possible."

 

His father shakes his head, "I went about it all wrong. I thought that keeping you out of the media's eye meant not letting them know that you were my son. I could've made it plausible, I could've made it seem like Junghyun's mother was your mother to the world, but I couldn't. If you were known to the world as my son, the expectations and pressures put upon you would've quadrupled over night. You would lose your childhood and lose any sense of freedom when you finally reached adulthood."

 

"I still did," Jungkook sits up, wiping his face with the back of his hand, "I still did lose it."

 

"I know," his father agrees, "and that's why out of everyone, the only one to blame is me. I made all the wrong choices I made thinking that they would be better for you, but in the end all I did was ensure the inevitable."

 

Jungkook sniffs, trying so hard not to let the raw feeling in his throat show in his voice, "You could've told me. You could've told me everything. I'm not a child anymore; haven't been for a long time. If you had just talked to me and told me why you did all of this, maybe I wouldn't have tried so hard to fight back. Maybe I wouldn't have grown up thinking you were ashamed of me as your son!"

 

"No!" his father states adamantly, "I was never  ashamed of you. I'm so proud of you, Jungkook. Always have been."

 

"Why?!" Jungkook hisses, "I haven't done anything to be proud of! All I do is show up to parties and shake hands and stay put in my assigned corner. I've done nothing with my life. There's nothing to be proud of."

 

His father stands up and moves instantly to sit by Jungkook's side. The couch dips with his weight, forcing Jungkook closer. His fathers arms come up and wrap around Jungkook's shoulders and Jungkook finds himself clutching the man tight. So tight like his entire world would float away if he let go.

 

"Appa..."

 

"I'm sorry, Jungkookie," his father's broken voice came, "I'm so sorry I made you feel that way. I'm so sorry I've hurt you so much. There's nothing I can do to take it back. All I can do is tell you that I'm so so sorry and pray that you'll forgive me."

 

Jungkook squeezes the man tighter.

 

"Don't ignore me anymore," Jungkook's voice cracks as the floodgates finally spill. His father's warm hand comes up to pet at the back of his head like he used to do when he was younger. Jungkook cries silently as he thinks about how maybe this was something his mother used to do for him too. His mother that he had never met and will never get a chance to meet.

 

Tears streamed down his face as he thought of the life he might've had if his real mother was still around. Would everything have been different? Or would've have ended up in the same situation, just like his father had predicted?

 

He would never know. 

 

So he sucked it up, forcing himself to stop crying and to pull away from his father's embrace.

 

His father looks him in the face, hand running down the side of his face and stopping. "I love you, Jungkook. More than you could ever know. Or maybe you will know when you have your own children."

 

Jungkook couldn't help the small little huff of a laugh that comes out. His father lets a small smile grace his features and Jungkook finally starts to see a little bit of the man he had looked up to his entire life again. 

 

Jungkook considered himself lucky. Sure his life hadn't been the best, but it most certainly wasn't as bad as it could've been. Sure he no longer had his mother, but he had his father. His father who tried his best in his own misguided way.

 

Jungkook was grateful that he had his father. After all, so many people out there had horrible parents who didn't love them at all. Jungkook knew he was privilaged in this way. 

 

He hugs his father again this time, burying his face in his shoulder. 

 

"I forgive you, Appa," he says so quietly. He feels like the brick weight that had been pressing into his chest for years had finally been lifted. Was this what it felt like to get closure?

 

Maybe he should try this 'talking about his problems' thing more often.

 

"But..."

 

His father pulls back, a questioning look on his face, "But...?"

 

"I know she didn't want this life for me, but it's too late to try to change the past," Jungkook says as his father nods along solmenly, "So instead of denying my place in this family entirely...I think we should come clean to the world."

 

His father listens with open ears as Jungkook continues to explain, "We can't just keep this hidden. Sooner or later someone is going to get curious as to why I am always on these family trips as your nephew and yet none of the rest of my 'family' ever shows their faces. Someone is going to start snooping around and figure it out. I don't want this to blow up in your face, because you don't deserve that. Maybe...if you take responsibility for your actions without being forced to, the backlash won't be as harsh."

 

His father stares at him, a strange look on his face. For a moment, Jungkook thinks he's going to be snubbed, that his father was going to think that was a horrible idea and that it would ruin his career and the rest of his life.

 

But then he smiles, a kind beaming grin that suddenly makes Jungkook feel like the luckiest son in the world.

 

"That right there, Jungkookie," his father says with a shining gleam in his eye, "Is why I will always be proud of you."

 

 

**********

 

Hoseok was pacing back and forth across the room so fast that he was making himself dizzy. He had tried to stop at the large window in Jungkook's room and look outside to gather his head. After a few minutes of staring at the garden bathed in the moonlight outside the window, Hoseok found he couldn't just stay still anymore. 

 

The room he was in was massive. The rooms in the White House were gorgeous, a large king sized four post bed standing proud in the middle of the room and a wide foot bench at the end. Hoseok sits down on it for a moment, running his sweating hands over his pants. 

 

He fiddles with the cloth of his pants for a few seconds as he bounces his knees. 

 

He wondered how Jungkook was doing right now. He had faith that Jungkook was strong enough to handle himself but at the same time, Hoseok knew just how hard it was to deal with problems like these. 

 

Hoseok runs his hand through his hair. He knew he was just being anxious for no reason. Jungkook could do this. Hoseok knew he could.

 

Really, what Hoseok seemed to be the most anxious to know about was how the President reacted to what Jungkook was going to propose. From Hoseok's observations ever since working at the Blue House and so close to the First Family, he had come to find that the President was a good man with a kind heart.

 

Jungkook took after him a lot, and for that much he was thankful. 

 

Hoseok felt like perhaps the President would take it well, but even still there was something inside him that was scared of just how the President would react. Even the kindest people sometimes had bad reactions. 

 

Hoseok just wondered how lenient the President really was.

 

He stands up again, pacing back towards the door and then back towards the window. He turns around again, moving back to the door and then back again to the window, three more times.

 

Breathe, he instructed himself.

 

Inhale, his chest rose with his large inhale in through his nose. Exhale, the air escapes from his lungs and Hoseok starts to minimally start to feel better. For about a half a second. Then the anxiety comes back. 

 

He walks back to the window. This time, he forces himself to stay there. No more pacing. All it was doing was causing him more anxiety. He just needed to stay in one place. Not move. Take another deep breath and calm down. He opens the window just slightly, letting the cool breeze in to help him clear his head.

 

Jungkook was fine.

 

As fine as he could be at the moment.

 

He was okay, so Hoseok didn't need to worry. But he still did. Looking out over the back garden, he could see clearly the path that lead down to the large parkway that led to the Washington Monument where the pair of them had been earlier.

 

Hoseok had finally been able to clear his head from the confusing atmosphere that had been surrounding them when they had been sitting together under the light of the moon. He thought that he was in the clear once the strong tingling feeling had subsided when they ran away together, but the feeling was quick to morph into something else--something even more confusing.

 

Hoseok was used to worrying about Jungkook--it was his job, but more than that, Hoseok considered Jungkook like a close friend, a caring dongsaeng and...maybe something else.

 

This kind of worry he was feeling right now was something Hoseok had never felt before. It wasn't even because he didn't think Jungkook could handle it, but it was just...he didn't know. 

 

Jungkook had been so close. Hoseok had felt so much of him earlier that night. Jungkook had steadily told Hoseok many things about himself as they had gotten closer, but never once had Jungkook completely broken down like that.

 

It had struck him straight to the core, and churned like acid, because it was wrong. Jungkook should never had to feel like that. He hated it so much that Jungkook was in so much pain and Hoseok was powerless to do anything to take that pain away from him. The startling thought had even run through his mind that he wouldn't even mind switching places with Jungkook if it meant the younger didn't have to hurt like he was hurting right at that moment.

 

But what frigthened Hoseok the most wasn't this unusual brand of worry he was experiencing, but something completely different. 

 

Hoseok had felt something when he had looked into Jungkook's eyes earlier that night.

 

He knew that feeling. It was the same feeling he had felt in the beginning of his relationships with his ex's. But with his ex's it had always been rather muted, a pleasent 'yeah, I wouldn't mind this too much' feeling.

 

All the feelings he thought he had grown used to in all of his years of life had morphed into something abnormal and Hoseok wasn't sure how to deal with them.

 

The feeling was no longer just an 'I wouldn't mind' feeling, but something much stronger. It felt like it was being screamed through a megaphone into his ears and rattling his brain. It scared him how fast 'I wouldn't mind' turned into 'I've never wanted anything more'.

 

He was scared out of his mind and that wasn't helping whatsoever with the anxious worry eating away at his mind that steadily increased with every minute Jungkook still didn't walk through that door.

 

But then the door knob turns and Hoseok whips around, back against the window seal as his eyes jump to the doorway.

 

Jungkook steps inside, closing the door behind him and leaning his back against the sculpted wooden door. Hoseok's heart stutters in his chest as he takes in the look on Jungkook's face.

 

It was completely blank.

 

Hoseok takes a unsteady step forward, hand coming up to reach out to him. "Jungkook--"

 

The stuttering comes crashing to a halt as suddenly Jungkook's face bursts into the most enormous, overjoyed grin Hoseok had ever seen on the younger's face.

 

Something soars in Hoseok and he lets out a disbelieving breath of air, "Jungkook? Your father, he...?"

 

Hoseok was already half way across the room by the time Jungkook flings himself at him. They meet in the middle, arms automatically wrapping around each other as they scream and laugh like mad men. 

 

"He agreed!" Jungkook yells happily into Hoseok's ear as Hoseok chest fills with a kind of excitement and relief that caused him to bounce off the walls. 

 

"Oh my--" Hoseok huffs out a surprised gasp, still spinning and now jumping in circles with an excited and over-the-moon Jungkook in his arms. "Oh my god!"

 

"I know!" Jungkook exclaims and Hoseok could feel the blinding grin on the younger's face as he presses his face into the side of his neck. Hoseok couldn't help but shudder with the sudden overwhelming feeling of how right this felt. "We did it!"

 

Just holding Jungkook in his arms like this. Carefree and excited and screaming and celebrating. They nearly topple over each other, loosing their footing before they right themselves up, laughing like donkies but not even giving a single fuck because they were just so damn happy--Jungkook for finally getting what he deserved and Hoseok because Jungkook deserved every bit of it.

 

Jungkook pulls back, face peeling away from Hoseok's neck where he had smushed it. The empty breeze that is left in Jungkook's wake feels uncomfortable. His body rejects Jungkook's pulling away like it was something that just upset the natural order of things. He wanted to hold Jungkook to him even more tightly--celebration or not. He didn't want the warmth of the younger to disappear. It was like his life source. A light in the distance that Hoseok was desperately chasing.

 

His whole body felt electrically charged; like at any moment a shock of a spark was going to ripple through him and force him forward back into Jungkook.

 

Their arms were still wrapped around each other firmly, Jungkook's hands drifting further down from his upper back to his lower hips. Hoseok's arms remainded around Jungkook's back, upper arms hooked under Jungkook's arms and holding onto the upper ends of his shoulders. 

 

Hoseok's eyes fall upon the breathless overjoyed face the younger is still sporting, all wide teeth and curled lips. His eyes crinkle in the way that Hoseok has only seen when Jungkook was really truly happy.

 

Suddenly the room was too warm, despite it being the middle of the night and the window blowing in a cool breeze. All Hoseok could think about was the warm pink glow on Jungkook's face, his cheeks puffy and eyes tired from crying earlier that night yet frenzied with a sparkle of excitement. He looked so stunningly beautiful and the realization runs right over him like a freight train going a hundred miles an hour with broken brakes.

 

Then something in Jungkook's face shifts--the thrill in Jungkook's eyes from the earlier events suddenly morphing into something else. Hoseok feels the intense eyes on his face as his cheeks flood with blood involuntarily. Jungkook's hooded eyes flitter from Hoseok's gaze to his cheeks and then down to his mouth and Hoseok starts to feel like the planets and the sun and the stars were aligning in his heart and if it he wasn't careful at any moment an all consuming fire was going to errupt inside him--

 

Gravity is a curious thing, because despite every one of Hoseok's alarm bells ringing in his head, screaming at him to stop--fucking stop before you fuck everything up!--nothing could stop gravity and what pulled the two of them closer to each other.

 

Hoseok melts into the soft folds of Jungkook's lips just as easy as if he was diving into a cool pond in the middle of a flowered clearing in the middle of the woods. A single drop was all it took and suddenly the current was flowing faster than Hoseok could handle. Dragging him down and down deeper into the water. Hoseok welcomed the burn in his lungs.

 

Jungkook presses into Hoseok strongly, hands gripping his shirt tightly as he's pulled flush against Jungkook's chest. Their lips glide over each others easily, a natural tug inside him like a red string pulling him even closer to the younger who kissed him with everything he had.

 

Fuck it, Hoseok remembers thinking as he drinks in every taste on Jungkook's lips--sweet and salty at the same time. Hoseok could feel Jungkook's breath on his cheek and his hands in his hair and all it does is push him forward. He dives deeper into the pond that is Jungkook. 

 

With every press of Jungkook's mouth against his, Hoseok feels another burst of goosebumps errupt over his skin. Hoseok's hand is at the back of Jungkook's head and he's tilting it back, their mouths automatically readjusting to fit each other as Hoseok's thumb grazes over the flap of Jungkook's earlobe. 

 

One of Jungkook's hands scratches at the base of Hoseok's neck and he accidentally lets out a squeak that sounds too much like a moan.

 

Then he's falling through the air, only to land on a pile of down feathers as Jungkook pushes him further up the bed. Hoseok's palms scrap past the coolness of the comforter as he tries to help push himself up to where he needs to be, Jungkook's lips work incessantly over Hoseok's all the while.

 

His head hits a pillow, but doesn't stay there for long as Hoseok's back arches up and he's lunging straight back into Jungkook, kissing his lips like he was never going to let them detach again.

 

The movement causes Jungkook to halt in his actions, his legs forced to bend as he basically straddles Hoseok's hips. Jungkook's panting on top of him, out of breath already like he'd just run ten miles without a break, but he doesn't ever release his lips. 

 

Instead, his hands grasp onto either side of Hoseok's face as his tongue finds its way inside Hoseok's mouth, only to be met with his own tongue. He tastes like mint and a hint of oranges. He could feel every breath between the two of them on his tongue and he flicks it forward as Jungkook's tickles the roof of his mouth.

 

It feels tantalizing and oddly enough arousing--pushing Hoseok to grab ahold of Jungkook's body, holding them chest to chest and Jungkook sliding further into Hoseok's lap.

 

But then Jungkook is pushing him back. He hits the pillow again with a jolt but then moments later, Jungkook taste is back on his lips and he's riveting.

 

Little groans escape from their connected lips and Jungkook's hands were everywhere. Hoseok's eyes were closed but his heart was open as every inch of whatever had been between them all of this time finally seems to find a place to connect. 

 

Hoseok's hands had drifted down to Jungkook's legs, ghosting lightly over the youngers bottom before finding purchase in the swells of the back of his thighs. Jungkook bends his legs, bringing them closer and grabbing ahold of Hoseok's right hand and dragging it up the front of his leg and all the way back up his chest, slipping under his shirt.

 

Hoseok's palm rests flat against Jungkook's abs before Jungkook's hand pushes it up farther, up to his chest and in between his pectorals. Hoseok's pinky runs over a nipple that's hardened with desire, elicting a strangled moan from the younger. Where his hand rests, he could feel the rapid beating of Jungkook's heart. Hoseok was surprised to realize that it matched the speed and intensity of his own heartbeat.

 

The thought only made him want to dive even further into Jungkook.

 

"Hyung," Jungkook moans out, speaking for the first time since they had jumped each other. He moves his mouth from Hoseok's and immediately attaches his lips to Hoseok's neck.

 

Despite how fucking amazing Jungkook's body felt against his and how far gone he felt, lost in the indescribable feelings of the moment--the memory of reality suddenly crashses back into him and it's then that something clicks in Hoseok's head.

 

He grasps Jungkook's shoulders and shoves him off him, the younger lips popping off his neck with a wet smack. 

 

"Hyung, what--?"

 

"Stop, stop, stop," Hoseok is scrambling to push Jungkook off him, despite the youngers confused protests. Jungkook swings his leg off him and Hoseok pushes away. He doesn't get off the bed but instead pushes himself as far away as possible from the younger--hitting the dresser.

 

"Hoseok, what's wrong?" Jungkook's voice was raspy and hypnotic, like a man who had just had the daylights kissed out of him and Hoseok has to tamper down the swell of pride and desire that washes over him that makes him want to shove the younger back onto the bed and have his own dirty way with him.

 

But that was exactly what Hoseok was trying to put a stop to.

 

"Jungkook, we--" Hoseok pants, hand reaching up to touch his mouth, face completely shocked and mouth trembling. The action draws Jungkook's attention. Hoseok takes in the swollen flesh of the younger's lips and it takes everything in him to not groan at the sight.

 

"What--what is this?" Hoseok doesn't know what the fuck he's asking, but he finds that he was also confused. He hadn't realized that Jungkook had even been attracted to him at all. This all seemed to come out of nowhere for him, despite the storm that had been brewing inside him for months. Practically since the two of them had met.

 

The victories of the evening and the fantastic make out session--yes, Hoseok could admit it-- must've brought out the confident side of Jungkook, because his gaze is unwavering.

 

"I like you, hyung," Jungkook states bluntly. The words were magnetic and the heat that explodes over Hoseok's body almost has him keening over. But he doesn't dare move. Instead, just stares at Jungkook who continues talking without evening caring that Hoseok looked like he was drowing in rapidly hardening concrete. "I like you a lot. Have for several months now, I just--"

 

Hoseok breifly wonders if it was possible to use a defibrillator on oneself even though the exact heart he was trying to restart was his own.

 

"I didn't know what exactly this was between us and I didn't want to risk anything and quite frankly I was scared and..."Jungkook trails off, looking up at Hoseok with an unusual vulnerability. No, it wasn't usual actually. Vulnerability was really only something Hoseok had learned Jungkook showed around him. Here he was, sharing the most sensitive troubles of his life with him, but this moment was something different.

 

This was more than just family troubles and lifelong dreams. This was something entirely different. This was like trying to jump between parallel trains and risking falling through the cracks to your ultimate death.

 

"Do you..." Jungkook gulps, eyes flickering everywhere like he was too nervous to look into Hoseok's eyes. Eventually, Jungkook seems to gather his wits about himself and looks him deep in the eyes, "Do you feel the same, hyung?"

 

Hoseok felt like he was swallowing gravel, "I..."

 

There was a tug-of-war going on inside him, his brain pulling against his heart, both of them telling him different answers. Whatever he said now would change his life. Regardless of the answer, the outcome was the same--something was going to change. But it was up to him to choose the outcome with a world of pain or the outcome that could potentially lead to something amazing. Something that Hoseok wasn't sure he would ever get the opportunity to experience again.

 

"Please don't lie," Jungkook's voice comes out wobbly. When Hoseok's eyes snap back up to the younger, no longer was the confident open Jungkook in front of him--instead the scared, defenseless kid that Hoseok had tried so hard to protect was there, eyes getting misty with terror at the prospect of having his heart broken.

 

The last thing Hoseok wanted was to break Jungkook's heart. But did he even feel the same? If the intensity in which he kissed Jungkook back a few moments ago was any indication, Hoseok sure as hell felt the same way, if not even stronger. But it was no longer just a matter of did he feel the same way. Jungkook was on the cusp of having his life change for the better. Hoseok didn't want to be the reason why everything fell apart before they even had a chance to get better.

 

He should lie. That was the responsible thing to do. Lie to the kid and make him believe that Hoseok didn't want him just as much as Jungkook wanted him. Lie to him and make him believe that he was never anything to Hoseok other than dongsaeng he wanted to protect.

 

That was the safer option. That was the noble option. That was the option Hoseok so badly wanted to choose.

 

But he didn't.

 

"I do."

 

The air is quiet. Still as the night, but the soft light in the room illuminates the pair of them. Hoseok stares at the bed, tracing the patterns of the comforter with his eyes. 

 

Hoseok hears a noise escape and he looks up to see that Jungkook's face is downright giddy as he tries his best to fight back a blush creeping along his face. It was super fucking adorable and Hoseok absolutely hated himself.

 

He groans internally. This was going to be so painful.

 

He takes a deep breath in. Now or never.

 

"I do feel the same way about you, Jungkook, but just because we have feelings for each other doesn't mean we should act on them," Hoseok rushes out all the words in one breath, ignoring how they tasted like acid in his mouth

 

He could practically hear Jungkook's heart shatter from the other side of the bed.

 

"What?" the younger squeaks out.

 

"Whatever this is between us is dangerous and there's too much at stake," Hoseok continues at a rapid pace, "Acting on these feelings could be extremely dangerous--"

 

"Wait, wait, wait, what?" Jungkook is up on his knees, crawling until he's directly in Hoseok's space. "What is that supposed to mean? What do you mean 'dangerous'? What are you talking about?"

 

"Jungkook, you need to understand that you're you and I'm--I'm me, and--" Hoseok is cut off.

 

"Who I am to you, hyung?" Jungkook asks, brows furrowed with the same stubborness that Hoseok knows would be hard to disuade. "Am I just some kid that you have to protect? Is that how you see me?"

 

"No, that's not it!" Hoseok argues back, grabbing a pillow from the bed and clutching it to his chest like a barrier so that he doesn't just spill his entire guts. He needed something to hold onto, something to ground him or he was going to explode. "You--you're the President's son and I'm your bodyguard and--"

 

"You told me that I was more than that," Jungkook's voice raises, outrage mixed in with fear and Hoseok was starting to get nauseous. He wishes with his entire being that he had took the easy way out and lied. "You told me that you wanted to be more than that. You said you wanted to be my friend and that you would stay by my side and--"

 

"You don't understand!" Hoseok yells, exasperated, "It's unprofessional. I could get fired."

 

"Not if we don't tell anybody," Jungkook points out, desperate to make Hoseok see.

 

"Do you really think that's plausible, Jungkook?" Hoseok asks, "Really? Truly? Because I think it's foolish to think that we wouldn't get caught."

 

"I'm not the president," Jungkook suddenly blurts, anger gracing his tone, " I can have a relationship. I don't have a throne to inherit; it's not like I'm a fucking crown prince. I can have something that isn't just given to me because of who I'm related to. I want something real. Something that only happened because of me. The real me. Not because of who I am. Not because I am the president's son."

 

Jungkook struggles out a whimper, "Weren't you the one who told me earlier that I didn't need saving? It was only because of those words that I was able to talk to my dad and stand up for myself tonight. I thought...I thought that you truly believed that I could take care of myself and that was the only reason I felt it for myself."

 

Jungkook's head ducks down, "You mean so much more to me than just a fucking bodyguard. More than a friend and more than a hyung. Surely, you have to see that? Surely you can't think that this,"--he uses both hands to motion in between Hoseok's body and his own--, "this, this thing that we have that's taught me more about myself than any member of my family could, that this is wrong?"

 

Jungkook tries to look hopefuly; tries to look strong, "It's about time that I was allowed to have something I want, just for me. And what I want...is you. If you'll have me, then I promise you that it won't be a mistake."

 

Hoseok doesn't even dare to exhale.

 

"So...what do you say, Hoseok?"

 

Hoseok has to blink hard to keep himself from crying. He fucking hated that he got so emotional whenever he had arguments. It really fucked him over when he was trying to prove a point and stay strong in the face of his opponent. 

 

But then it hit him.

 

Jungkook wasn't his fucking opponent. 

 

Jungkook was just...Jungkook. He was the same annoying jerkface that he had met all those months ago chasing that purse snatcher. He was the same sweet kid who lived for attention and curled into his touch whenever he laid a comforting hand on him. He was the same alluring man who would say such seductive words to him that made him want to fold right then and just let Jungkook have everything--all of him.

 

He was everything Hoseok didn't know he wanted and he couldn't believe he was sitting here on the precipice of having everything he ever wanted and instead of taking it, he was trying so desperately to stomp on the breaks.

 

Because he wanted to save Jungkook. The same Jungkook who didn't want saving. The same Jungkook that Hoseok had been trying to convince didn't need saving and yet here he was not taking his own words to heart. 

 

Jungkook never needed saving. Not when he first met him, or any of the other times that Hoseok thought he needed saving. And especially not now.

 

Hoseok refused to be the very type of person that Jungkook despised. The person who didn't believe Jungkook could protect himself. The person who didn't believe Jungkook could save himself.

 

Jungkook didn't need saving. 

 

As much as it was Hoseok's job to protect Jungkook physically, the boy was so much more capable of anything and everything beyond Hoseok.

 

Jungkook amazed him every day.

 

He couldn't believe what we was about to agree to. He closed his eyes and prayed to his future self.

 

Send me a sign that this isn't going to be the worst mistake of my life.

 

"Hyung?" and then Jungkook's soft warm hand was on top of his and Hoseok opens his eyes.

 

He swears he sees his entire life in flashes as he looks deep into the dark open irises. All the mistakes he'd made in the past and all the decisions he'd made that led him up to where he was now. He saw glimpses of the future. A vision of the future he could have. 

 

He saw the present. He saw the moment in Jungkook's eyes, reflecting Hoseok's own heart back at him. He remembers something the President said to him earlier that day.

 

"Everyone has that one person they want so much...That person they want to be more than anything...who brightens your world and for who you would do anything just to see them smile...But there's always something keeping you apart. Who you are or...who you're not..."

 

"My moment of weakness actually was the moment I felt the most strength in my entire life."

 

This was Hoseok's moment. He could choose for this moment to be a moment of weakness...or he could choose to make it a moment of strength. He could choose to have that person who he wanted so badly. He could choose to not let those things keeping them apart rule their lives. He could avoid making all the same mistakes that Jungkook's father had made that caused so much pain in multiple lives.

 

It was up to him now.

 

"Okay."

 

"What?" Jungkook asks, the words having been spoken to fast for Jungkook to comprehened.

 

"I said..." Hoseok gulps, turning his hand in Jungkook's and sliding their fingers together, "Okay."

 

"You..." Jungkook's chest heaves, "You mean it?"

 

Hoseok nods, "Yeah...don't make me regret it."

 

Jungkook shakes his head, a stuttering smile slowly forms on his lips, "I won't. I promise."

 

"Good," Hoseok nods his head up and down, an elated feeling rising in his chest, "Because there's no take-backs now."

 

Before Hoseok can change his mind, he's pouncing, pushing Jungkook back onto the bed and resealing their promise with an equally eager and searing kiss.

 

Chapter Text

 

Jungkook backs him into the wall, lips attacking Hoseok's roughly as his hands roam over the soft skin that's covered by the cotton of his clothes.

 

Hoseok chuckles as lips tickle over his neck. Jungkook sucks into his skin, letting his tongue swirl over the red marks when he pops off. Jungkook ravishes in the heat that gathers between their bodies.

 

Hoseok's hands up come off, settling on Jungkook's chest, trying to push him off slightly. "Calm down, Jungkookie, I only just got here."

 

"I know but it's been a whole day," Jungkook argues. "How am I supposed to wait that long to kiss you?"

 

Hoseok laughs some more, a noise that makes Jungkook's heart pump faster with warm golden blood, ignited only by Hoseok's sweet kisses and soft touches. "Who knew you were so sappy?"

 

"I'm not sappy," Jungkook snaps back.

 

"Says the boy who attacked me the second I walked through the door to start work," Hoseok points out, pulling Jungkook's head away from his neck and diving back in to capture his lips. 

 

Hoseok moves forward, walking him backward until the back of Jungkook's thighs touch the edge of the couch in his room. His feet falter slightly when Hoseok bites down on his bottom lip. He catches himself with one hand on the armrest and the other wrapping around Hoseok's waist, pulling him even closer in between spread legs.

 

Hoseok wraps his arm around Jungkook's neck, mouth tasting him as his tongue moves around inside his. Jungkook laps it up, the feeling sending pleased shivers down his spine.

 

"You're lucky I was the first person here this morning," Hoseok grumbles into Jungkook's mouth, sucking on his lip and nibbling.

 

"Mmmm," Jungkook growls under his breath, "Who's the one who missed who now?"

 

"Still you," Hoseok says as he pulls away, making Jungkook surge forward only to be denied another kiss. "We have to get you to class."

 

"Fuck class," Jungkook says as he plants both hands firmly on Hoseok's hips and pulls him forward. Hoseok dodges his lips like a champ and Jungkook wants to flick him on the forehead.

 

Hoseok beats him to it. "Ow! What was that for?"

 

"If you're going to skip school so you can make out with me, then I'm going to start withholding my lips from you," Hoseok tells him, voice stern even though his hand was trailing up and down his bicep, fingers tracing a ticklish pattern on his skin.

 

Jungkook grumbles, "Hyung."

 

That makes Hoseok pull away completely, "Don't you try to 'hyung' me."

 

Hoseok walks over the desk in his room and picks up his bag with all the usual schooling materials in it. He shoves Jungkook's notebook and laptop into it as Jungkook walks up behind him. He wraps his arms around Hoseok's waist again and hugs him from behind.

 

"Come on, hyung," Jungkook whines (although in his head it was more like aegyo).

 

Hoseok turns around in his arms, and brings both hands to Jungkook's face. He pulls him closer by the cheeks and reattaches their mouths. He kisses him deeply, as Jungkook holds his sides gently, purring on the inside at the fact that he had managed to affect Hoseok. Too soon, Hoseok pulls away again.

 

Jungkook's about to whine again when Hoseok lets his lips hover teasingly over his. 

 

"Once you go to school and come back then I promise we can come back here and kiss all you want," Hoseok promises. A happy smile breaks out on Jungkook's face.

 

"Promise?" he asks, eyes fluttering as he watches Hoseok's eyes for traces of lies he knew were not going to be there.

 

"You bet your sweet ass," Hoseok surges forward, pressing his lips to Jungkook's once sharply and hotly before pulling away and swinging his backpack into his arms.

 

Jungkook barely has time to recover from the kiss and catch his bag before Hoseok smacks his ass once and then walks away. 

 

He stands at his desk for a few seconds in shock before a mischeivous smile forms on his face and he finally turns around and walks out the door behind him.

 

It's safe to say that Jungkook's  mind was everywhere but on school for the rest of the week.

 

*****

 

Walking along the winding path, the only noises Hoseok could hear were the sounds of his own panting breath, and the sounds of the trees rustling. Technically, they'd hiked up this low mountain several times before, but each time he couldn't help but be awed by the new sites before his eyes.

 

Whether it was a new flower blooming in the brush, or the smell of dew sliding off the sleek leaves in the morning. It was a well kept hiking pathway, with a few benches at several stops and some water fountains every couple of miles. 

 

Even though it was done up rather nicely, the forest was the owner of this land, and in being so the wildlife grew everywhere. Tall trees that hung overhead and moss growing along the steps that headed upward.

 

Jungkook liked this path a lot, he'd been the one to take him here in the first place. About three weeks after Hoseok got the job, they came here one morning on the weekend when Jungkook had a free day. It was as beautiful then as it was now. 

 

Except there was something more beautiful about it this time. Something that stood out to Hoseok much more than any of the previous times.

 

He figured that maybe this time, it was because it was his first time being here with Jungkook. Not Jungkook who was his friend and protectee, but Jungkook who was something more to him. Something precious, something...his

 

Walking side by side down the path, Hoseok and Jungkook had done this loads of times before, but never before was there this sort of humming in the air. Before the forest path had been beautiful all of its own right, but now the forest was lit up in a way Hoseok couldn't even begin to describe.

 

Maybe seeing Jungkook's smiling face as he walked beside him just suddenly made the world look more beautiful by extension.

 

Jungkook's hand nudged the back of his as their arms swung back and forth between them as they walked. They moved close together, almost touching, but not quite. Sure, this path was pretty secluded, but there were still many people walking about.

 

It was a beautiful spot, so of course all the older folks (many of whom were like professional hikers in their professional hiking outfits and gear) were speeding by. The ahjumma's talked loudly to their friends and the ahjusshi's focused on the hike itself. Bikers zoomed by every now and then, and Hoseok and Jungkook stayed on the walking side of the pathway, where the occasional mother and child would stroll by. 

 

Even with all the other people walking down the path, Hoseok still felt like he was in his own little world. Just him, and Jungkook. That was really all he needed.

 

Still with every brush of their hands together, Hoseok ached to just take that extra step and link their hands together. Since he had the chance to feel what Jungkook's skin felt like, he was helpless to the touch. He craved it all the time, just the feeling of softness beneath his fingertips. The silkly smoothness that felt like youth.

 

The skin of Jungkook's hands felt different from the skin of say, his arms or his face. Whereas his face was smooth, with the occasional bump of youthful acne, his hands were rough, calloused. Not necessarily for the usual reasons that one would have calloused hands, but for another reason. A reason that Hoseok was sure that not even Jungkook knew. 

 

Perhaps, some hands just spoke a language that no one knew how to understand. Hoseok wanted to study Jungkook's hands. Maybe there was a story there that no one else knew. The thought that maybe whatever this was between them would allow Hoseok to learn Jungkook like nobody else thrilled him.

 

He loved that feeling. That feeling of learning someone, of knowing someone---knowing Jungkook, in this way. It made his toes curl with excitement, the prospect of it. It was all so new, and yet so comfortable, as if it had always been this way.

 

His fingers extended outwardly, catching onto the side of Jungkook's hand but not holding it all together.

 

"What--?" Jungkook's question was interupted when a biker whizzed by and Hoseok pulled him just directly behind him. He hadn't been in any immediate danger, the biker wasn't going to hit him, but still Hoseok just needed to pull Jungkook closer to him.

 

It made him feel better. The proximity. Maybe he was becoming one of those clingy boyfriends, but Jungkook didn't seem to mind. He gave him a sly smile, one that said I know what you're doing. But even still, Jungkook didn't comment verbally and neither did Hoseok, content enough to just let the little moment they shared pass after having tasted and savored it fully.

 

But Jungkook didn't let go of his hand. Not even Hoseok attempted to move slightly away, Jungkook held steadfast. He looked up into Jungkook's face only to find the younger was still looking forward, not really caring to answer Hoseok's questioning gaze.

 

Deciding to continue on regardless, Hoseok let a smile curl over his lips. This was nice. Right. Just walking down the path with Jungkook beside him, hands linked in the most inconspicous way possible. It didn't matter that the gesture didn't project to everyone "Hey, Look at us! We're together!" All that mattered was the touch. That was all Jungkook wanted and that was all Hoseok wanted as well.

 

He was content.

 

That was what they'd agreed to when they decided to start this relationship. They weren't in the position to just up and announce to everyone what they were to each other, the world didn't work that way. Jungkook was preparing for his big annoucement in the world of politics and Hoseok was still his bodyguard. Despite everything, Hoseok's number one priority was to protect Jungkook.

 

With everything that was sure to come out, all the negative press that was sure to surge once the details of Jungkook's birth and true place within his family were revealed to the press, it was more than likely that the Blue House would have to up their security measures. That meant that Jungkook was not going to be allowed the same freedoms he had been allowed in the beginning with Hoseok's protections. 

 

They'd talked about that too. Hoseok had asked how Jungkook's true identity revelation would effect his freedoms and restrictions in regards to his security detail. Did this mean that Jungkook would be even more restricted than he once had been? Would they still be able to come out here on their morning hikes on the weekends, or would Jungkook be forced to stay home within the grounds of the Blue House?

 

Would Jungkook be able to go to his univeristy on the scheduled date and then wander around afterwards eating food afterwards? The answer was likely no. Jungkook would be monitored more closely than he had ever been. If he were to become a public figure--a face that everyone would recognize on the streets, then he wouldn't be able to walk them freely anymore.

 

Maybe they could still spare the time to come out here on the odd weekend or two, but Hoseok doubted they'd be able to go much of anywhere else. In a way, Hoseok was worried that after everything, the freedom that Jungkook had worked so hard to achieve, it was just going to be completely thrown away. 

 

And yet, this was exactly what Jungkook wanted. To be acknowledged as part of his own family. He didn't care about being restricted to his house if that meant that he was no longer denied his true parentage and was allowed to be the son he always wanted to be to his father.

 

His father had warned him against the same. Hell, that was his main reason for pushing Jungkook away in the first place, but now it was all coming back around full circle. It was all way over Hoseok's head but still, if it was something that Jungkook was okay with, then Hoseok would do whatever was asked of him to help.

 

That was why they were out here today. They had finished the week of proper schooling and tommorrow night was the big reveal. 

 

Today was the last chance for Jungkook and Hoseok to walk around outside the Blue House walls and have no one recognize them. Of course, Hoseok's face would never be broadcasted to the country--he was nothing but a guard--but Jungkook's face....it was likely that after this "scandal" broke out, that there would be more eyes on him than he could even imagine.

 

Hoseok just hoped Jungkook would be able to handle that. But even if he couldn't, Hoseok would be there to help him. 

 

Hoseok hadn't been able to have very much alone time with Jungkook that whole week. If Jungkook wasn't in school then he was in meetings with his father and his father's cabinet. He had meetings with advisors and specialists and media experts and strategizers. It all felt very much like Hoseok had been dropped in the middle of kingdom preparing to make its crown prince a king. 

 

Even if Jungkook wasn't an actual prince, he held himself like one. After the meetings, they would meet up briefly and Jungkook would tell him what his father's advisors were planning in regards to his official announcement. Apparently, taking the honest route was not a popular plan, but one that his father had insisted on. That meant that the rest of the cabinet was left to run around like chickens with their heads chopped off trying to find a solution that would lessen the blow that was sure to come with an announcement like this one.

 

Nevertheless, Jungkook seemed to be thriving off of it. He was contributing ideas and working with the strategizers. On the few times that Hoseok had been able to be present for one of the meetings, he had seen the look of excitement on Jungkook's face. It was a whole new world for him, but one he had been striving towards for a long time. It made Hoseok feel good to know that Jungkook was finally starting to get the things he worked for. 

 

He had to resist the urge to kiss the daylights out of the younger man when he walked straight out of those meetings looking professional and confident and just downright sexy. The man was already attractive enough before all of this came into play, but now Hoseok was finding he liked seeing this new look on Jungkook too. 

 

It was like starting a new book in a series, starting off on the right foot. Still, Hoseok couldn't help the slight ominous feeling he had, like waiting for the other shoe to drop. Maybe he was just nervous to know how the public would react to Jungkook. This was someone who meant a lot to him. His person and it made him feel slightly strange, knowing that they had just gotten together and now he was going to have to share him with everyone else. 

 

Still, he prided himself on the fact that no one else would ever know Jungkook in the same way that Hoseok had him now. That made him feel better and just allowed him to watch Jungkook with hungry eyes.

 

His favorite moments were the ones when Jungkook would catch his gaze accidentally and do a double take when he saw the look in Hoseok's eyes. One of realization and equal amounts of desire. Alas, the meetings held precedent. 

 

But that didn't stop either of them from running away and shutting themselves into empty conference rooms and attacking each other's mouths like it was the only sweetness they had ever known.

 

Pushing each other against walls, they both did their damndest to get as close to the other as possible. Hoseok reveled in the stolen kisses. The light nips to the sensitive skin on his neck and the ticklish licks to his earlobs and jaw. 

 

His hands were everywhere, he couldn't get enough of the feel of Jungkook. Everywhere on his body felt soft yet solid at the same time and Hoseok was at a lose as to how exactly. Usually when this thought would run through his head, Jungkook would do that thing with his tongue and Hoseok would just fucking melt into a puddle of goo on the ground. 

 

It was these moments, that he completely forgot who he was or where he was and just felt. It was the most alive he felt in years. He could've attributed it to the fact that this was all new and exciting and yet, there were moments that were completely the opposite that felt the exact same way.

 

Like once all of Jungkook's meetings were done for the day, and the two of them would retreat to Jungkook's room for the evening. They would eat a little something together, having missed dinner because of the meetings and then they would just sit together. 

 

Sometimes they would watch a little TV and kiss, other times they would just talk--and kiss. Hoseok had learned a great deal more about Jungkook through this. He knew that Jungkook was happy about how this whole situation had turned about, but he was also nervous--terrified even. 

 

Just like how Hoseok had felt, Jungkook too thought that all of this was just the calm before the storm. Of course, the Blue House was anything but calm, but Hoseok understood what Jungkook meant. 

 

But when Hoseok would tell him the exact same thing he told himself, Jungkook would look at him with bright eyes--eyes that shone with trust and adoration and maybe even something a little deeper and then he would kiss Hoseok lightly on the mouth. Then again. And again.

 

And again, until Hoseok could feel himself sliding down the length of the couch with Jungkook moving up over him so that Hoseok was lying competely on his back with Jungkook's hands and arms on either side of his body. 

 

Jungkook's leg would slide in between his and Hoseok's hands would slide up and over his thighs and hips. His finger would bunch in the material of Jungkook's shirt and he would tug him closer. He just tasted too good. Felt too good.

 

Then he would pull back and Hoseok would get another look at his face. His lips shining with their natural gloss and cheeks pink. Hoseok would chuckle and pinch them because it was too fucking adorable and Jungkook would push back, telling him to stop and yet would just turn redder and make Hoseok laugh.

 

It was usually around this time that Hoseok would head home, with one last lingering kiss. He would dodge the sneaky hands Jungkook possessed that tried to attach themselves to Hoseok's tie in order to drag him back down onto the couch with him. 

 

This was still a new relationship and even though he was sure about it, he still felt like it was best if they took things slow. Until they were both sure of everything and everything else surrounding Jungkook had calmed down. If they played their cards right, they would have all the time in the world to do things like sit on the couch and just kiss and kiss until their lungs demanded oxygen. 

 

Believe that Hoseok wanted to stay with Jungkook just as much as the younger wanted him to, but Hoseok really couldn't just stay the night. Not only would it look suspicious if he never clocked out and never clocked in, but he needed fresh clothes and a shower and all of those other necessities he would only have access to at his apartment.

 

It wasn't like he could just take a shower at Jungkook's. He already was teasing the boy enough, and a shower right there would just be too much, too cruel. Hoseok thought it was fun being a tease, but he didn't want to be cruel to the boy either. And okay, maybe resisting the temptation would be too much on his part as well. It was already hard enough not to touch Jungkook everywhere when they were in positions like that, but throwing in a shower and a bed into the mix would just complicate things. Things that were better off being complicated at a later, more convenient time.

 

Even still, this was their last day together before everything changed. Whether those changes would be for the better or worse, neither of them had a clue. So that meant, that whatever may come, they were going to make the most of today. It was their day to do whatever they wanted on their terms.

 

So they had planned it out and Hoseok had shown up earlier than usual that morning, ready to spend the entire day with Jungkook; "guarding" their date as Jungkook liked to joke. It was to be their first real one since they had confessed their feelings for one another that night in America all those nights ago.

 

By the time they got to the top of the mountain hill, the morning hours were aging and it was beginning to get a little warm. It didn't really bother him though seeing as the place they stopped was covered with shade, the tall trees only letting slivers of sunlight peek through their leaves and dot the ground with golden sprinklings.

 

It was a little cheesy, but it was their first technical date, so Jungkook had packed a blanket in his backpack, along with drinks while in Hoseok's own backpack, he had all the breakfast food ready to set up and eat.

 

A picnic. 

 

Hoseok had never been on a picnic so he would be lying if he said that he wasn't excited. Jungkook had been the one to suggest it, and although Hoseok had been surprised, he still felt that curl of affection in his stomach as his eyes tried to burn the image of Jungkook's pink cheeks into his mind. 

 

Setting their backpacks down, Hoseok looked around.

 

"I'm surprised there aren't more people up here," Hoseok says, more of an observation than anything he wanted Jungkook to provide an answer to. "The view's amazing. How come you've never taken me here before?"

 

Jungkook unzipped his backpack and pulled the blanket out, large and rolled up. 

 

"This isn't on the path, see," he points off to a place beyond where they were to a copse of trees that blocked their view from the trail they had been on previously. "Most people keep walking further up to the observation landing."

 

Hoseok knew the one he was talking about. They'd gone there several times. The view was better, but the one they had right now held a very good argument for itself.

 

"Plus, no one thinks to look behind the trees and there aren't really any benches or anything to sit here," Jungkook smiles, giving him a wink, "Perfect for a private picnic date."

 

Hoseok rolls his eyes but there was no actual irritation behind it, just amusement. He goes over to his own backpack, having put it down closer to Jungkook's and gets to his knees to unzip it and pull out the food they brought.

 

Meanwhile, Jungkook had already set the blanket up, flattening it out and using his backpack to hold the corner of the blanket down.

 

"I can't believe the cooks just gave you free food from the kitchens," Hoseok mutters, a bit salty a the ease in which Jungkook could get the things he wanted, "Seriously, roast beef? Not only did you manage to get them to give you the roast beef they were making for dinner tonight, but you somehow got them to make it into sandwhiches too?"

 

Jungkook laughs, getting the drinks out and opening them. 

 

"I have my ways," he wiggles his eyebrows, "I can be very persuasive when I want to be."

 

Hoseok scoffs, "Yeah, don't I know it."

 

"But you love it."

 

"I actually hate it."

 

"Oh hyung, I forgot to tell you that today is opposite day."

 

Hoseok gives Jungkook a deadpan look, "Are you fucking with me right now?"

 

"Always," that cheeky smile was back.

 

"Don't make me smack you with this roast beef sandwhich," he threatens, pulling out the food and pulling his arm back to fake the movement that he was very tempted to actually use to smack him in the face. In the end, he just handed him the sandwhich while the toddler giggled playfully at him.

 

"And here I thought you were the hyung," Jungkook grins.

 

"I am," Hoseok says, pulling out his own sandwhich and taking the drink Jungkook held in his outstrectched hand, "It's not my fault that you act like baby goat on crack and I have to threaten you to get you to calm down."

 

"Hey! I'm way cuter than a baby goat, I can't believe you would insult me that way."

 

"Why did I ever think that maybe you would mature once we started a relationship?"

 

Jungkook actually smiles at this, and brings a hand down to pat Hoseok's leg, scooting closer even whilst he took a big bite out of his sandwhich. After swallowing, he nudges Hoseok's arm.

 

"We have all the time in the world to mature though, no?" 

 

Hoseok turns to Jungkook, appreciating the reflective look Jungkook had on his face.

 

In a way, Jungkook was right, they had all the time in the world to grow in this relationship, but for Jungkook himself, his time was rapidly running out.

 

He nudges Jungkook back, "You only have one more day."

 

He nods, contemplative as he bites into his sandwhich, "Yeah...that's why I'm getting all my immature out today."

 

Hoseok instantly felt bad for giving him a hard time. He should've realized. As if Jungkook noticed the look on his face, he uses his knee to knock into his. "We gotta do all the immature stuff today and then tomorrow we can be mature."

 

"Yeah..."

 

"But then again, Rome wasn't built in a day," he says flippantly. "I doubt I'll really change all that much."

 

The thought made Hoseok feel better. He was glad, oddly. He didn't want Jungkook to change too much. He liked him the way he was with his innocent heart and free dorky spirit. 

 

"Good," Hoseok mumble, trying to hide his fluttering eyes from the younger by taking a sip of his drink and then dropping the subject to continue eating. Jungkook watches him as he eats silently beside him, a glint in his eyes.

 

As soon as they finish the sandwhiches, Jungkook moves back into his backpack. "Time for dessert!"

 

Hoseok whips his head to look at him, "You packed dessert?"

 

"Of course!" He pulls out a small cooler and unzips it. He pulls out two small cartons of ice cream and two spoons. He hands one to him and then sits down to open his own.

 

Hoseok looks at the flavor on his, "Chocolate Cherry Blast? How'd you know this is my favorite flavor?"

 

"It's called paying attention," Jungkook gives him a duh look.

 

"Oh." There was that wrench of affection in his gut again. Damn it. Jungkook needed to stop being cute and considerate. It was ruining any amount of resistance Hoseok might've had against him.

 

Hoseok was glad for the ice cream, because he was already warm enough as it was. The air was hot and with each moment spent with Jungkook on their date, Hoseok could feel his face getting redder and redder. This wasn't supposed to happen. 

 

Hoseok had never gotten so flustered on any of his past dates before. 

 

Jungkook was already digging into his ice cream by the time Hoseok got around to shaking the butterflies off and opening his own carton to eat.

 

Taking a bite, the flavor melted in his mouth and he couldn't help the groan of appreciation that he lets out.

 

Jungkook chuckles through a spoonful of ice cream in his mouth, "I take it you like it?"

 

He nods, "Mmmhmm."

 

He doesn't even bother answering out loud, instead moving to dip his spoon back in and eat more. Shit, this was good. There was a reason it was his favorite and now Jungkook was his favorite because anybody who bought him this damn ice cream was automatically his favorite person on earth. Not that Jungkook really had any competition at this point.

 

They continued to eat their ice cream in content silence. They looked out at the view of the city from the top of the mountain.

 

Jungkook finishes his ice cream first, and he places it off to the side. He looks at Hoseok, still eating his own ice cream and just smiles before turning back to the view.

 

"Hyung," Jungkook's voice comes quietly, almost apprehensively.

 

"Hmm?"

 

"Do you think I did the right thing?" Jungkook asks, ducking his head down slightly, "You know, deciding to come out to the entire country?"

 

"It's not like your coming out though," Hoseok says, knowing that that wasn't really what Jungkook was talking about. "Nothing to worry about."

 

"Yeah but...I don't know, birth scandals, gay scandals, which do you think is worse?" Jungkook asks, chewing on his bottom lip, "I have the potential to get caught up in both."

 

Hoseok decides that joking around probably wasn't the best idea for now. So, he takes Jungkook's hand, running his thumb lightly over the top.  "I wouldn't worry about it too much, Jungkookie. Even if things don't go as well as planned,"--Hoseok didn't even want to think about what could happen-- "It won't be the end of the world. You'll still have your father, who will love you regardless."

 

Jungkook nods, then tilting his head to notion to him, "And you?"

 

"Yeah..." he stares at Jungkook with eyes shining in adoration as he speaks in a warm voice, "And me."

 

*******

 

After they come down from the mountain, they go out to walk around the streets again. They take the subway to the market and just walk around, window shopping. They go into a department store after a bit and look around. Hoseok said he wasn't going to buy anything for himself, but Jungkook took to a particular pair of pleather jeans and he saw Hoseok gulp out of the corner of his eye.

 

He decides to try them on, just to see Hoseok's reaction.

 

Dragging him into the department store changing rooms, Hoseok stops them and says he'll wait outside. He makes his way to open the door to escape, but Jungkook stops him.

 

He shakes his head, pulling Hoseok in by the arm until his head is obscured from view in Hoseok's neck and his mouth by his ear. There's a giant mirror behind them and Jungkook locks eyes with Hoseok through it as he whispers hotly in his ear.

 

"You're my boyfriend now," he whispers, "Don't you wanna see what's in store for later?"

 

Hoseok shudders both from his words and from the look in his eyes. Jungkook gleefully beams on the inside. Hook, line and sinker. Hoseok was a goner. 

 

Good to know if he ever really needed to, he could seduce his way into getting what he wanted.

 

He would have to save it for special occasions though. However, since this was a special day for them (Jungkook's first date ever outside the Blue House), he figured there was no harm in flaunting what he was working with.

 

Hoseok didn't seem to mind. Especially not as he eyed him in the slightly more cramped than usual dressing room. 

 

Jungkook didn't know too much about stripteasing, having never really done one before, but judging from the way Hoseok kept biting his lip, eyelids hooded and glancing away whenever Jungkook happened to lock eyes with him in the mirror, Jungkook concluded he was doing a damn good job.

 

"So, what do you think?" Jungkook turns around, pressing his palms into the front of his legs. 

 

Hoseok watches him and doesn't answer. Jungkook noticed that his chest was expanding and contracting in rather fast movements. He smirks to himself, deciding that this was his first date damn it and he would have as much fun as he wanted. Besides, he knew Hoseok was game.

 

"I don't know about them," Jungkook says, pursing his lips and turning his head backwards to take a look at the backview in the mirror. The material was strained over his ass and thighs. "I think they feel a little...tight."

 

Maybe it was the emphasis on the last word, but Hoseok chokes on his own saliva and Jungkook pretends to not notice anything out of the ordinary.

 

Jungkook plays innoncent and continues to check out his own ass in the mirror, knowing that that was exactly where Hoseok was looking too. Good. 

 

"T-They...you, you look good," Hoseok stutters out after having calmed down.

 

Jungkook smiles, "Yeah? You think?"

 

Hoseok nods.

 

Jungkook turns back around, moving closer to Hoseok who was already doing his best to melt into the wall.

 

Backing him almost completely into the wall, Hoseok's hands shoot out and stop on hips and hold him back slightly.

 

Jungkook doesn't let that stop him at all. Smirking, Jungkook lets his face move slowly closer to Hoseok's. He had such thick eyelashes, framing sparkling eyes and his pursed lips made his dimples indent his skin cutely. He looked good enough to eat, up close like this. So Jungkook leans in as close as he could, brushing his nose around Hoseok's, mouth moving close enough to tease but not close enough to touch. He whispers, "How good?"

 

As if finally getting what Jungkook was aiming for, Hoseok seems to snap and there's a curled finger under his chin, pulling his face up and guiding his mouth to the older man's.

 

Taking him in swiftly, Jungkook basks in the taste of Hoseok's lips on his own. Hand moving down to touch his thigh, Jungkook was very glad for his plan to try these on. He was definitely going to buy them. He might "try them on" in front of Hoseok again some time in the future.

 

Jungkook's arms come up around Hoseok's shoulders as their mouths slot to the side. Deepening the kiss, Hoseok grips onto his waist tightly with his other hand. Heart beating fast, Jungkook presses closer and closer, kissing him more, deeper. 

 

And then Hoseok's pushing him into the wall on the opposite end of the dressing room. Pressing their chests together tighter, Jungkook melts in satisfaction with Hoseok so close to him. He moves his arms down, clutching Hoseok's side and pulling him closer, impossibly closer. He just wanted Hoseok all over him. 

 

Hoseok's lips part from his and Jungkook's first instinct is to whimper in protest. In response, Hoseok attachs his lips to Jungkook's throat, sucking and licking along everywhere. Jungkook moans, probably too loudly to be inconspicous, but he doesn't give a single fuck as he grabs a handful of Hoseok's hair and pulls his head back just enough so that their lips could attach once again.

 

Hoseok tongues at his lips and Jungkook gladly lets him in. One hand still in his hair, Jungkook staggers them back onto the other end of the dressing room, using his free hand to slam into the wall to stop Hoseok's back from colliding too hard with the wall.

 

"Fuck," the curse slips through Hoseok's lips when Jungkook bites into his bottom lip and his leg slides in between his legs. Jungkook was close to losing all control.

 

And then there's a knock at the door.

 

Hoseok and Jungkook stare at each other in a mixture of shock and horror.

 

"Is everything okay in there?" an attendant asks, voice suspicious.

 

Jungkook is the first to act. He clears his throat, "Uh, yes, everything's fine. I just got the wrong size pants and was having some trouble getting them off."

 

This makes Hoseok snicker obnoxiously, but Jungkook slaps a hand over his mouth and muffles any sound.

 

"Oh!" the attendant's voice sounds relieved. Who knows what dirty thoughts they could've been thinking was happening in here (they would've been right, but still). "What is your size, sir? I can go retrieve the proper size."

 

"Um, I think 110?" Jungkook tells the attendant. The attendant scuttles off and the two of them are quick to scramble away from each other. Jungkook rapidly changes his pants, a difficult feat seeing as the material was pratically glued to thighs (Hoseok just slapped his ass in revenge).

 

Quickly exiting the dressing room after checking to make sure they both looked presentable and not like they had just been sucking face hard enough to pass out in the dressing room. Jungkook accepts the larger pair of pants from the attendant who gives them both a strange look. They quickly pay and get out of the store as fast as possible.

 

As soon as they step out into the open air, freshly bought bags in their hands, they promptly burst into maniacal laughter. They laugh together, Hoseok clutching his ribs as they walk down the street.

 

"I can't believe we did that," Hoseok says, wiping a stray tear from his eyes from laughing too hard. "We could've been caught."

 

"We we're caught!" Jungkook says. "That attendant totally knew what we were doing."

 

"No, he didn't!" Hoseok argues back.

 

"Of course he did!" Jungkook fires, "You totally had that look of 'I just had the daylights kissed out of me' written all over your face!"

 

"Well, at least I don't have a hickey!"

 

Jungkook freezes in place, hand flying up to his neck,"Fuck, seriously?!"

 

Hoseok's laughter picks up tenfold. "No, but you should've seen your face. That's what you get for attacking me in there like that."

 

"Dick move, Hobi," Jungkook shoves him lightly on the shoulder. Truthfully, it was kind of funny but he wasn't going to give Hoseok the satisfaction. "And I didn't attack you! I just followed your directions."

 

"What directions, what the fuck? I didn't say anything to you?" 

 

"You were begging me with your eyes to push you up against the wall and kiss you, don't even try to lie to me." Jungkook grabs onto Hoseok's arm, "I saw the way you were ogling my ass!"

 

Hoseok splutters, face turning red in embarrassment, "Was not!"

 

"Was too!"

 

"Well you were practically wiggling your leather clad ass in my face, where else was I supposed to look?!"

 

"Oh, I don't know, my eyes!"

 

Hoseok scoffs, rolling his eyes. "Like you dragged me into the dressing room in order to try on those pants so I could ogle your eyes. Admit it! You were trying to seduce me!"

 

"I resent that!"

 

"Please," Hoseok brushes him off, "You can't even deny it because it's fucking true. You are a devious little shit, Jungkook, and you know it."

 

"But you like it," Jungkook smirks in his direction, making that ridiculous face with a singular evil eyebrow raising.

 

"I resent that."

 

"Ha! I knew it," he says smugly.

 

"Fuck you," Hoseok huffs.

 

"Seemed to me like you were right about to."

 

Jungkook can't help himself from cackling evilly when Hoseok turns red and starts choking and stammering yet again. Ah man, Hoseok could certainly dish the inneundos but he certainly couldn't take them. Oh man, Jungkook was having so much fun.

 

Jungkook just grabs ahold of his free hand and pulls him along the street.

 

 

****

 

They spent the rest of the day in the park, watching the families play around with their kids and the street performers play their instruments. Jungkook stopped to drop a few bills in the guitarists case and the man nodded a thanks to him.

 

They didn't hold hands, couldn't in such a public place as this, but they stuck to each other's side like glue. Jungkook continuously side stepped while he was walking in order to "accidentally" bump into his chest.  Hoseok's hands brushed his arms and his hands and back so often that he might as well have been holding him with how often his arms went back and forth between the same places.

 

They had sat on a bench and Jungkook had gotten the idea to lie down and strech out and take the entire space on the bench up. He rested his head in his lap and they talked about this and that. Light topics, but still personal enough to make Hoseok feel like he was truly learned new things about Jungkook everyday.

 

"We had a pet dog in the Blue House for about three months," Jungkook tells him after a large golden retriever owned by a park patron comes up to them and Jungkook practically throws himself at the thing. 

 

"Why so short?" Pets usually weren't rented out by the month. They were usually an own until you can't anymore kind of deal.

 

"My m--Junghyun's mother is allergic," Jungkook answers. "She didn't stick around long enough for me to form an attachment to her, but I remember she was this small thing. She looked so breakable. Was probably just a puppy."

 

Jungkook smiles at the memory, "I used to play with her all the time. Sometimes I couldn't tell if she was always following me around or I was following her around. She was a good dog."

 

Hoseok runs his fingers through Jungkook soft hair, fluffing it in his hands as he listened intently.

 

"I think when I'm older and I have a place of my own, I'd really want a dog," Jungkook says.

 

"What would you name it?" Hoseok asks.

 

Looking up at the cloudy sky, and the sun shining down through the soft pillowly fluffs, Jungkook's mouth quirks up.

 

"Gureum," Jungkook answers, "I want a fluffy dog with fur like that of a cloud. That would be nice."

 

Hoseok hums, a warm feeling settling over his heart. "Yeah...that would be nice."

 

Soon, evening falls and they head back into the city to get to the restaurant where Hoseok had made reservations. They hadn't been kidding when they had meant for their date to last the entire day.

 

Jungkook had no idea where they were going, but he let Hoseok lead the way.

 

When they get to the restaurant, Jungkook opens his mouth in suprise.

 

"Wow," he marvels, "This is a really nice place."

 

They walk in, going up to the hostess. She gives them a once over, noticing that their attire wasn't exactly up to the standard of what it should be for this kind of restaurant. They weren't dressed that casually. Hoseok thought they looked quite business casual and fancy restaurant appropriate.

 

Nevertheless, it didn't really matter.

 

"Table for two for Jung," he tells the hostess.

 

"I'm sorry," she says, not bothering to check the list, "We're completely booked with reservations this evening. If you would like to come back another time--"

 

"I have a reservation," Hoseok tells her, "Under Jung Hoseok. If it's not there, then surely you can call Seokjin over and he can fix that right up."

 

Maybe it was the name dropping or maybe it was that she had actually found his name on the list (he actually did make a reservation), but the hostess was quick to apologize and lead them to their table.

 

It's only when they're fully seated that he notices Jungkook's awe-struck face. 

 

"What?" Hoseok asks.

 

"This is Seokjin's restaurant?" Jungkook blurts out, looking around in disbelief.

 

Hoseok nods, "Yep. He's a chef. He owns three restaurants in the city."

 

"A chain?"

 

"Nah, just his original one, here and then the two expansion sites on the other side of town," Hoseok says, "He has other people managing those. He likes to stick close to this one since he lives near here and so do Yoongi, Jimin and I."

 

Jungkook nods in understanding, "That's so amazing how he was able to do this. He's made such a living for himself."

 

"Yep. We invested a lot of our blood, sweat and tears into this place," Hoseok nods, reminiscing.

 

"We?" Jungkook asks.

 

"Well, Jin didn't necessarily have enough money to really start the place up and afford to pay the staff," Hoseok explains, "Yoongi invested a lot of his own money that he really couldn't afford to spend in this place. Jimin and I worked here for free. Jimin had his second job at the Blue House and I just worked in exchange for meals. I worked miniscule side jobs on the side just fresh out of the military and did my best to help Jin out with this place."

 

Jungkook stares at him, eyes wonderstruck and admiring. 

 

"Wow," he says in silent amazement, "That's amazing, hyung."

 

"What's amazing?" a familiar voice asks as he walks up to their table.

 

Menus in hand, Jin looks every bit of the hotshot restaurant owner as he was. 

 

"Hyung!" Jungkook calls brightly, a big smile on his face from seeing Seokjin again. "It's been a long time!"

 

Seokjin smiles extra widely seeing Jungkook here, "Jungkookie! How nice to see you again. How's work coming along?"

 

The question was aimed at the both of them but Hoseok is the one who answers, "It's been going pretty good."

 

"Yeah?" Seokjin asks, "I heard you guys went to America? How was it?"

 

Jungkook turns pink, an unusual but not unwelcome sight in Hoseok's eyes. He squashes down the fond chuckle he wants to let out and instead focuses on answering Jin discreetly.

 

"It was a good trip," he answer before stealing a loaded glace at Jungkook, "Rather enlightening."

 

Jungkook meets his gaze and holds his eyes there. The corners of his mouth turn up ever so slightly, like usual except there's more affection in it than teasing. Jin looks back and forth between them oddly before clearing his throat.

 

"Well, what brings you out to eat tonight?" he asks, changing the subject. "Special occasion?"

 

Jungkook perks up, bending forward towards Jin, "Yeah actually, we're--"

 

"Celebrating!" Hoseok blurts before Jungkook finishes his statement. Jungkook and Seokjin's heads snap towards him at his rather loud outburst. He's quick to explain. "Be sure to watch out for Jungkook on the news tomorrow, hyung, you might be in for a surprise!"

 

The atmosphere is tense for a few moments, Hoseok refusing to look away from Jin and look at Jungkook's reaction.

 

"Uh...okay," Jin mutters. "So, what can I get you to eat?"

 

After they order, Jin walks away without a word and Hoseok braces himself for Jungkook's reaction.

 

Deciding to just speak up first, "Look, Jungkook, I'm sorry--"

 

"No, it's okay, I get it," Jungkook says, giving a small smile that looked more like a grimace, "Our relationship can't really be known if who I am is going to be revealed to the entire country tomorrow."

 

Hoseok feels the guilt grip him, "No, Jungkook, that's not what I meant. It's just--well, Jin, he's-"

 

"Your friend," Jungkook nods, "I get it. You don't want him to know just yet. I understand. We're keeping it on the down low. I haven't told anybody else either."

 

"You haven't?" 

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "No. Not even Jimin and Taehyung."

 

"I'm sorry for assuming you were gonna tell him," Hoseok apologizes, reaching over and touching Jungkook's hand.

 

Jungkook chuckles lowly, "You weren't wrong. I was about to tell him. I wasn't thinking. I'm the one who's sorry."

 

Hoseok sighs, "This is gonna be really difficult, isn't it? Keeping this--" he gestures between the two of them "--to ourselves."

 

Jungkook smiles geniunely at him, although his eyes droop a little, "So difficult."

 

"Well," Hoseok murmurs, looking down, "Maybe...if you want...we can tell one person. We can tell Jin, if you want to. He's trustworthy although I don't doubt I'm gonna get the scolding of my life. I'm practically craddle-robbing."

 

"I'm gonna choose to ignore the implications behind what you just said and instead focus on the fact that, yes, I think we should tell Jin," Jungkook says, "Maybe this way, with one person knowing, it won't be so hard to keep it to ourselves. We won't feel like bursting at the seams."

 

Hoseok smiles at Jungkook, "I think you're right."

 

"Of course I'm right. I'm Jeon fucking Jungkook. Everything about me is right."

 

If they weren't in a fancy restaurant Hoseok would throw a breadstick at him. Jungkook reaches across the table and pulls the breadsticks towards him and away from Hoseok.

 

"No breadsticks for you," Jungkook says with a faux fearful expression.

 

Hoseok balks, "How the hell did you know what I was thinking?"

 

"You were staring so hard at those breadsticks, I figured you were either thinking of chucking them at me or sucking their dick," Jungkook says in such a deadpan voice that Hoseok almost chokes up the champagne he had taken a sip of.

 

"Jesus, you have a filthy mouth," Hoseok wipes the back of his mouth with his napkin, after resisting the urge to wipe it with his sleeve. 

 

"You have no idea," Jungkook winks at him, the innuendo strong in his voice. Hoseok avoids his eyes. He was still irritated that he hadn't gotten used to Jungkook's surprises by now. One of these days he was gonna choke for real because of Jungkook and no one would be there to give him the heimlich.

 

"Just eat your damn ravioli and shut the fuck up," he mutters under his breath.

 

"Whatever you say, hyung. Your wish is my command." 

 

Hoseok calls a nearby waiter and demands ice water and pronto.

 

******

 

It's when Jungkook's in the bathroom that Jin comes back.

 

Hoseok was still sitting at their table, paying the bill and sending it back with another waiter before Jungkook could even think to snatch it up.

 

He pats Hoseok on the shoulder and then moves to the other side to sit in Jungkook's vacated seat. "So, how was it? Good?"

 

Hoseok smiles, "Of course, hyung. Your food is always amazing."

 

"I'm glad you think so, especially since I've been working so hard to train these newbie chefs to make it exactly like me. It's difficult but I think they're coming along," Jin tells him.

 

"Bring them my compliments."

 

"Will do," Jin taps his fingers along the arm rest of the chair. He purses his lips then turns to him with a serious look. "Actually, Hobi, I had something I wanted to talk to you about."

 

"Oh?" Hoseok feels himself sweat a little on his back. "What about? Jungkook's going to be back at any second."

 

"I know," he says, "That's why I wanted to ask you quickly before he comes back. I know that you two have been extremely busy with official business lately, but I need to talk to you. About him."

 

"What about him?" Hoseok asks as innoncently as he possibly could, even though he already knew what Jin was going to say to him.

 

Jin sighs, "Are...are you two, you know, together?"

 

Hoseok doesn't answer for a solid minute. He knew that he and Jungkook had agreed to tell Jin, but he had expected to do it later and with Jungkook present. Not as a bombardment out of nowhere.

 

"Uh...."

 

"I just need to know because something feels different from before," Jin explains, "I know I've only met with you and Jungkook together a couple of times, but still something recently between you two has changed. You can't deny that, right? I'm not trying to judge you, although I think you should be careful, but I just--I guess I just need to confirm. I'm sorry, I really don't mean to pry but--"

 

"Yes."

 

"What?"

 

Hoseok groans, rubbing his forehead before looking straight at Jin, "Yes. We're together, as you put it."

 

Jin stares at him, mouth open and eyes wide. "Oh. Oh, wow. Okay, yeah, that's--yeah. Okay. Congrats, Hobi. But you know you have to be--"

 

"Careful, I know," Hoseok finishes for him. "Believe me, I know. Today's...well, today is the last day before huge news about Jungkook drops tomorrow."

 

Jin gasps, sitting up and looking at him with a horrified expression.

 

"No, no, it's not that!" Hoseok is quick to reassure him, "It's something else. You'll see. Trust me, it's gonna be--it's gonna be a shit storm to be completely honest. I have no idea how the general public is going to take the news, but we're bracing for the worst."

 

Jin raises his eyebrows and covers his lips with his pointer finger as he lets out a breath of surprised air, "Damn, Hobi. That sounds..."

 

"Yeah..."

 

"Well, I just wanted to let you know that whatever it is you two have, that I'll support you, okay? No matter what," Jin pats Hoseok's hand and then glances up. Seeing Jungkook walking towards them, he stands up. 

 

"Hyung..." Jungkook says to Jin who was now standing in front of him. 

 

Jin pats his shoulder. "Good luck, kid. You're gonna need it with that one."

 

Right before he's about to turn away and leave, Hoseok sees Jin lean in towards Jungkook's ear and whisper something to him. Jungkook looks surprised, but nods eagerly. Jin just smiles and laughs that knowing laugh of his and leaves them with a goodbye.

 

When Jungkook sits back down, Hoseok looks at him with an expectant expression. "What did he say to you?"

 

"Ah," Jungkook's face turns red. Okay, now Hoseok was really curious. "It's not really that important."

 

Hoseok sits back in his chair, "Okay....sounds fake but okay."

 

Jungkook just snorts into his pudding and Hoseok chuckles good naturedly into his own pie. This was going to be an interesting ride for sure.

 

*******

Jungkook doesn't want Hoseok to leave.

 

He pulls away from his lips to whine, "Can't you stay the night? Please?"

 

Hoseok bites his hand, forcing Jungkook to pull away despite it not really hurting. 

 

"You know I can't," Hoseok says, "Your press team is going to be here early tomorrow morning and I can't be here when they do. I'll be back soon enough."

 

Jungkook groans, completely annoyed at the press team who were unknowingly cockblocking him. "Fine."

 

"Okay," Hoseok pecks him on the lips once more, "I gotta go now, okay? But Jungkook--?"

 

Hoseok turns back to Jungkook who looks up at him with hopeful eyes. Hoseok bites his lower lip and gives him an adoring smile. "I had fun today."

 

Jungkook smiles brightly at him, running his hand up and down Hoseok's arm. "Me too. A lot."

 

Jungkook tries his best to give Hoseok his most persuasive 'one more kiss?' eyes. He inwardly cheers when Hoseok takes his face in his hands once more and presses a slow and soft kiss to his willing lips.

 

"Mmmm...I don't want you to leave," Jungkook says for the millionth time since they had gotten back to the Blue House from dinner. 

 

"I know," Hoseok smiles into the kiss, "If I had it my way, I'd stay."

 

"Really?"

 

He nods, running his fingers through his bangs and pushing them back to press a kiss to his forehead. Jungkook whines yet again when he pulls back. Hoseok turns away from him. He gathers his bag and gives him one last sweet goodbye before pulling the door to Jungkook's room open.

 

Jungkook strides forward and grabs ahold of his forearm.

 

Hoseok turns back around, surprised. "Jungkook?"

 

"You're going to come back right?" he asks, surprised at himself and how vulnerable his own voice sounded. He wasn't supposed to say anything at all, and yet he still found himself asking. He just couldn't stop himself. 

 

Hoseok's hand traces his cheek and underneath his eye. "I promise, Jungkookie. I'll be back tomorrow and I'll be with you the whole day. I'm not going anywhere. Not for a long time. As long as you want me, I'll be here."

 

Jungkook nods, taking in a huge breath through his nose and then exhaling through his mouth. "Okay."

 

"Just try to get some sleep okay?" Hoseok tells him sweetly, "You're going to be okay. No matter what happens tomorrow."

 

Jungkook nods, more like he was trying to convince himself rather than Hoseok. Looking into Hoseok's eyes he seems to find a bit of relief in the depths of the brown orbs. Maybe he really could do it.

 

Drawing Hoseok to him, he kisses him deeply one last time. Jungkook pulls away with his eyes still closed and doesn't open them until Hoseok has long since left.

 

He shuts the door and sinks down to the floor with his back leaning against the wooden frame. He tries to focus on how good a day he had today rather than the stressful one he was going to have tomorrow. 

 

He could do this. He takes a deep breath and repeats it to himself. He could do this.

 

Just as he's about to get up, he hears a knock on his door.

 

His first thought is that it was Hoseok, maybe come back because he forgot something or just to kiss him again. Jungkook feels a jolt of excitement spark inside him that distracts him momentarily from the anxiety and jumps up to open the door.

 

Pulling the door back, instead of finding Hoseok there, he finds his father standing there.

 

"Oh. Appa."

 

His dad raises an eyebrow, "Were you expecting someone else?"

 

Jungkook's head snaps up, "What? No. What?"

 

His father laughs amiably, patting his cheek. "Never mind, Jungkookie. I was just messing with you."

 

Jungkook lets out a nervous chuckle. "Oh. Ha."

 

He opens the door wider and lets his father walk in, knowing that he had probably come here to talk to him about something.

 

His father enters and moves over to his makeshift kitchen. He pulls out two mugs and fills them with hot water and places them in the microwave. Once the tea is made, he brings it to the couch and sets it down in front of them both.

 

"So, son, I've come here just to talk and see how you were feeling about tomorrow," his father says, patting his knee.

 

Jungkook shrugs, "I feel like I'm gonna throw up. Nothing unusual."

 

His father gives an empathetic chuckle, "I understand. I feel the same way."

 

"It's going to be worse for you than it's going to be for me," Jungkook points out. "They're going to hate you; demand your resignation."

 

"I know and I'm prepared for that," his father says, "Our team has been working hard to think of every possible reaction and what we can do to make sure that in the end this doesn't effect my job too much."

 

"It shouldn't," Jungkook says, "This is just..."--he laughs humorlessly--"the politics of politics."

 

His dad nods, "That it is. But still, I owe it to the public--and to you--to tell the whole truth."

 

Jungkook nods, taking a sip of his tea before setting it down, "I know."

 

"Tomorrow evening we are having another gala in honor of you," his father says. Jungkook nods, he knew of this already. Tomorrow during the day was the press conference and then in the evening was another large gala. Everyone in each branch of the government was invited as well as all the press and everyone else. It was more large scale than the last gala he had attended. At this moment in time, the guests didn't know at all what the gala was in celebration of. They just thought it was another chance for publicity for his father's new policies, but they didn't know the real reason.

 

Jungkook was sure they were going to be in for the shock of a lifetime. 

 

"Are you bringing a date?" his father asks.

 

Jungkook's attention snaps back to his father, "What? Date? Why?"

 

His father smiles, "No pressure. Just wondering because the planners are almost done with everything but they needed to make sure you didn't have a plus one."

 

"Uh..." Jungkook mutters. He couldn't exactly be like 'Hey, Dad! I actually have a boyfriend and he's my bodyguard, please leave a space for him!' He couldn't say that and he couldn't let anyone else know about him and Hoseok. Things were too volatile at this moment in time. The press didn't need anymore amo. "No. No, I don't have a plus one or a date or, or anything."

 

"Alright," his father winks at him, "If you say so."

 

Jungkook hangs his mortified head.

 

"Has Mr. Jung Hoseok been briefed about his updated duties?" his father asks. At the mention of Hoseok, Jungkook bristles. 

 

"Uh, yes. Yes, he has," is all Jungkook can say without turning red.

 

His father nods. "Good."

 

They're both quiet.

 

"You know, Jungkook, that body guard of yours is very smart," his father says with a smile.

 

Jungkook's face was burning so hot right now, he couldn't even look his father in the eye. "Yeah?"

 

His father nods, "You two make a good pair."

 

If his father could hear his heart beating like a hummingbird right now, he knew that he would've been so busted. Regardless, he already felt busted.

 

"...Thanks?"

 

"Anyway son, I must be getting up to bed. Big day tomorrow," his father says, standing up. Jungkook stands up with him, following behind him to the door.

 

"Of course, Appa," he says.

 

"Try to get some sleep, okay?" Jungkook smiles, that was exactly what Hoseok had said.

 

"I'll try."

 

"Good. Sleep tight."

 

With a pleasant smile, his father leaves him to his own devices and goes back up to his own room.

 

Jungkook sits down on his bed afterwards and tries to calm his beating heart. 

 

He wished Hoseok was here with him right now.

 

****

 

Jungkook escapes from the main room filled with tons and tons of people and moves to find the nearest balcony. Not being able to find one, he decides to walk around the massive building until he finds an equally massive set of stairs leading out to back area.

 

The stairs lead down to another smaller landing overlooking the back garden. The white pillars make the place almost look like a palace. A Greecian palace that belongs in an entirely different country. 

 

Jungkook doesn't pay much attention to noticing the details of the buidling, he was busy looking for Hoseok. 

 

Shortly after the dinner had ended and Jungkook was passed around from person to person, introducing himself and making awkward small talk, Jungkook looked around and found that Hoseok wasn't anywhere near him. Locating the nearest secret service agent, Jungkook found that Hoseok had stepped out for some air, taking a bit of break seeing as he had been on duty the entire day.

 

He hadn't left Jungkook's side the entire night, not even through the tense press conference nor through the formally introducing to the entire world at the gala. There were so many cameras and Hoseok had to work extra hard to fend off the rabid people coming at him like mosquitos after blood, trying to ask him question after demanding question. Often about how he'd grown up, what he thought of his father's decision, why he took so long to come out as the President's son.

 

Hoseok had fended them all off, answering with the generic answer that all of these questions had already been answered at the press conference and no parties will be expanding further at this moment in time.

 

Jungkook felt like he had barely seen Hoseok the whole day though. Despite the man sticking to him like a shadow, Jungkook's attention had been pulled this way and that way the entire day and it seemed to all go by like a whirlwind of stress and nerves and cameras and questions. 

 

The press conference seemed to go by in a blink of an eye but half the time he felt like he was stuck in a time loop with the same fucking questions being thrown at him and his father and his associates over and over and over again. 

 

Jungkook's phone had blown up but he had turned it off rather quickly, not wanting to even know how the media had gotten ahold of his personal number so quickly. 

 

At the gala it had been almost worse. Everyone wanted to to be told his story first hand and Jungkook had gone over it so many times, he could tell it from beginning to end and end to beginning or from any point in the story, forewards and backwards and sideways.

 

It almost felt like he wasn't telling his own life story anymore. It mostly felt like he was telling a children's storybook to a bunch of old politicians and gossip-mongers. After a while he had gone practically numb and whenever a new face came up to him he had automatically started telling his story without even having to be asked. 

 

The blur of faces and camera flashes had partially blinded him and he couldn't even recognize his own voice anymore, it sounded more like a voice recording. He wondered if that's what he should've done before the gala had even started. Recorded himself telling the story and then just press playback whenever a new person asked him for the two billionth time why he had been hidden away as a nephew his entire life.

 

By the time he managed to break away to down a full glass of champagne, and then another one, he couldn't find Hoseok.

 

So he left to get some fresh air and also find his boyfriend.

 

Stepping out of the building and waiting on the plateau that led to the rest of the downward facing stairs, Jungkook finally laid eyes on Hoseok. The older was leaning against a large pillar, looking out at the large garden fountain, illuminated by moonlight and color alternating plant lights.

 

Jungkook just stood there and watched him. He briefly wonders why Hoseok doesn't notice him but then the man turns around and rests his back against the ledge and Jungkook realizes why. His eyes were closed and he was just breathing in the night air. Trying to get a bit of peace.

 

Jungkook wishes that he could take away the stress in the older's shoulders. He knew this was going to be just as hard for Hoseok as it was for him. Hoseok had to shoulder a lot of new responsibilities because of this, and he hadn't even had a chance to adjust yet. He was just thrown into it only after a short amount of updated training. 

 

In his soft blue pinstripe suit and black bow tie, Hoseok almost looked like a different person. Jungkook takes a hesitant step down the stairs. Taking each step one at time, he waits for Hoseok to open his eyes and notice his presence. 

 

The lamplights hang over them and in the corners of the large stair case, Jungkook notices the soft illumination on Hoseok's tan skin. He could also see the crease in his forehead, indicating that he was trying really hard to relax; calm himself down and get rid of some of his stress.

 

"Hyung," Jungkook almost whispers.

 

Hoseok opens his eyes. And then he smiles tenderly at Jungkook and all his worries disappear. 

 

"Hi, Jungkookie," Hoseok says softly to him, reaching out to grab ahold of his hand that was in his pocket, and pulling him closer.

 

Standing directly in front of him, hips almost nearly aligned, Jungkook lets himself smile genuinely for the first time that night. He had been faking it the entire day and now was the first time during the whole night where he had found some alone time with Hoseok. It was a gift he intended to cherish.

 

"You look like your having fun," Jungkook teases.

 

Hoseok groans, "I'm having the time of my life."

 

Jungkook laughs lightly, just watching Hoseok's face.

 

"How's it going for you in there?" he asks, leaning against the pillar but with a hand resting on Jungkook; always touching him in some form or other.

 

Jungkook rolls his eyes, "My tongue's gone numb from the amount of times I've had to tell the same story over and over again."

 

Hoseok laughs, flicking his forehead without any real force, "Well at least it's not from kissing someone else."

 

"Ha ha, hyung," Jungkook knocks his shoulder into Hoseok's. "Lucky for you, I'm a loyal hoe."

 

Hoseok throws his head back and laughs loudly into the night and Jungkook feels his cheeks start to strain painfully from smiling so widely. God, it felt so nice.

 

"Yeah," Hoseok gazes at him, sucking in his lower lip as he looked into his eyes and pats his cheek affectionately, "Lucky me."

 

Jungkook wanted to kiss him so badly. He wanted to bury his face in Hoseok's neck and lose himself in his smell and the feel of the soft skin and pulse against his lips. 

 

"Last time we were at a gala, we went swimming on the roof," Jungkook tells him, giving a reminiscent smile at one of his happiest memories.

 

Hoseok snorts, "Oh my god, yeah, I remember. You fucking pushed me in."

 

"How many times do I have to tell you, I didn't push you in?"

 

"Never enough for me to actually believe you," Hoseok smirks.

 

"Fine. I pushed you in."

 

"Ha!" Hoseok barks in his face, "I knew it."

 

Jungkook didn't even feel like arguing back. He was finally feeling peaceful for the first time all night and he was not about to ruin it.

 

"Hey, Hobi," Jungkook says. Hoseok doesn't immediately deck him in the face for not using any sort of honorifics so Jungkook felt like he was in the clear, "Care to dance?"

 

Hoseok's face falls, "Jungkook, there is nothing I would rather do more right now...but you know we can't."

 

Jungkook sighs, rubbing Hoseok's shoulders, "Yeah. I know. Thought there was no harm in asking anyway."

 

Mostly because the music from inside was so loud and there were loud speakers already connected to the outside garden and they could still hear the band playing from outside.

 

"I'm sorry," Hoseok says, guiltily. "Any other time I would, but not here. Not with so much press lingering all over the place."

 

Jungkook nods, "Yeah. You're right."

 

They stand like that together for a few more minutes just looking at the view of the garden but then the song changes. It's no longer those upbeat songs for lively guests to listen to in the background while they chat.  No, now it was a slow song and everything in Jungkook just wanted to hold Hoseok close to him and sway to the music with him.

 

Hoseok looks at him longingly and then makes a growling sound, huffing out in defeat."Ugh, fine! Come here."

 

And then Hoseok is grabbing his hand and swinging him around until they were face to face with Jungkook's hand on Hoseok's waist and his hand on Jungkook's shoulder.

 

The band played a soft jazz song, an English song. The voice was deep and crooning and Jungkook found himself absolutely lost in the music and the enraptured look on Hoseok's face.

 

"It was fascination, I know.  And it might have ended right then, at the start. Just a passing glance, just a brief romance and I might have gone my way empty hearted~"

 

Jungkook was reminded of the first time he met Hoseok. It was really all so coincidental, all so long ago. He couldn't believe that now, all these months later he was here with Hoseok working for him as his bodygaurd but also being so much more than that to him. He was his now, and Jungkook wouldn't have it any other way.

 

He pulled him closer until they were chest to chest and Hoseok rested his head on Jungkook shoulder as Jungkook's hand went around to press deeper into Hoseok's lower back.

 

"It was fascination, I know. Seeing you alone with the moonlight above. Then I touched your hand and next moment, I kiss you. Fascination turned to love~"

 

The saxophone was soothing as the pair of them swayed to the soft waltz music. Jungkook allowed himself to finally bury his face in Hoseok's neck and breath in his familiar scent. He really owed this man so much. He would spend the rest of his days paying him back for all the ways he had helped him.

 

Through so much pain and confusion, Hoseok still stuck by him and it meant everything to Jungkook. Hoseok was the only one aside from his father who looked at him like he meant everything to them. Not even his mother or older brother wanted anything to do with him anymore. They had just acknowledged him and put on a face of family unity for the press and then left him to his own devices.

 

His father was the only one who truly knew him and cared for him. The only other, was Hoseok. Jungkook squeezes him tight, wanting to feel him close, oh so close to him, through his beating heart.

 

"It was fascination, I know. Seeing you alone with the moonlight above. Then I touched your hand and next moment, I kissed you. Fascination turned~to~love~"

 

Hoseok pulls back as the song comes to a slow end and Jungkook couldn't help but kiss him. He just looked too beautiful. Hoseok melts into him and Jungkook holds him close, not planning to ever let him go.

 

And he doesn't let him go...until he hears an interupting cough from behind them.

 

They pull away from each other so fast that it gives Jungkook whiplash. Turning around, Jungkook's heart nearly explodes with fright when he sees his brother standing there, watching them. 

 

"Shit, Junghyun," Jungkook presses his hand to his chest, "You scared the crap out of me."

 

Junghyun does not look happy to see them. Sneaking a glance at Hoseok, Jungkook sees that he's trying desperately to hide the terrified look on his face, but it was difficult.

 

"Junghyun--hyung-- I can explain--" Jungkook is cut off.

 

"Father is looking for you, Jungkook," is all his hyung says to him, with a scarily placid face. Jungkook couldn't tell at all what he was thinking. He had just seen them dancing and kissing! This wasn't good at all. Fuck, it was all his fault.

 

"You should go back inside before,"--his eyes slither over to Hoseok's form, who was caught between staring at him and watching the ground--"someone else finds you out here."

 

Jungkook nods. He's about to grab ahold of Hoseok's hand and drag him inside behind him when Junghyun stops him.

 

"Actually, Jungkook, I think it's best you go in alone," he says, voice like steel and so very hard to disobey.

 

He stares at Hoseok, unsure of what to do. Hoseok hesitates but lets go of Jungkook's hand.

 

"Go on inside," he tells him, his voice obviously shook but doing a good job of hiding it, "I'll catch up with you later."

 

Jungkook doesn't want to go. He doesn't want to leave Hoseok here with his brother. Who knew what he might say to him? Jungkook was terrified to leave only to find out later that something had happened.

 

But it looked like he had no other choice. 

 

Hoseok nods at him once, telling him that it was alright; that he would be fine. Jungkook swallows down the lump in his throat and stands up straighter.

 

With lead feet he walks back into the valley of the dead.

 

*******

 

Hoseok watches Jungkook's retreating form and balls his hands into fists. 

 

This wasn't going to be good at all.

 

He turns back to Junghyun who was looking at him with narrowed eyes.

 

"What's your deal?" Hoseok snaps.

 

"I told you to watch your back," he says, voice sharp like a knife, "Obviously you didn't listen to me. Now you've gone and done this and I'm not sure whether I should laugh or yell."

 

"What do you want?"

 

"I don't want anything," he says, but his face said otherwise.

 

"Why do I find that hard to believe?" Hoseok asks, not daring to move any closer to the man.

 

He shrugs, "Maybe cause your fucking my baby brother--"

 

"I'm not!" Hoseok shouts, a bit too loudly, "I'm not--we haven't--we're not..."

 

Junghyun does laugh this time, "I honestly don't give a fuck what you do with him. He can go and be a fag all he wants but now that he's gone and got his name and face publicized...now he's a threat."

 

Hoseok ignores the way acid shoots through his entire body and makes him want to breath fire at this man and burn him down to his very skeleton. 

 

"I don't know what you're saying--"

 

"Of course you do," Junghyun interupts. "Now that the entire world knows he's my brother, he's automatically associated with me. Anything he says or does is going to also look favorably or negatively upon me. I can't have him going around dicking down every lowlife who wants to get into his pants--"

 

Hoseok has to bite his tongue and pinch his thighs to stop him from lashing out at Junghyun right that instant. 

 

"--because if the media finds out, we're all done for."

 

"Then what do you want, huh?" Hoseok seethes, "You want us to break up? Cause I got news for you, no matter what you do, it's still going to look unfavorably upon you? If you out him, it's just going to come around to bite you on the ass, so what? Huh?"

 

"You're going to leave him alone if you know what's good for you," Junghyun steps closer to him, "Not only is he important in the eyes of the media, but he's directly connected to my father's reputation. I can have you fired and sent to federal prison for this. You've broken your contract which clearly states that you are not to touch him in any way shape or form that is not in the means of protection. Not only were you touching him, but you were kissing him and I could bet that you two were planning on doing a lot more than that."

 

Hoseok gulps.

 

"Unless you don't want to lose your job and never see Jungkook again..." Junghyun takes another step forward so that he was right up in Hoseok's face now. Hoseok's eyes widen as Junghyun's turn into that of deadly snake. 

 

"You better find some way to break his heart."

 

Chapter Text

"Hoseok?"

 

Hoseok jerks his head up from where it had been resting on the table, swiveling until he spots two familiar faces. "Oh, Taehyung. Jimin...it's just you guys."

 

"Yeah." Taehyung takes a step closer to him. Hoseok rubs his face and leans his elbows on the metal table in the kitchen. "What are you doing in here?"

 

"I'm on break," he says.

 

"Yeah, but why are you sitting in the middle of the kitchen?" Taehyung asks, moving to sit down on the other side of the table, "Why not rest in the break room? Or in Jungkook's room?"

 

"I'm on break, why would I be in Jungkook's room?" Hoseok didn't mean to get snippy but he didn't sleep well at all last night, nor the night before and the fatigue was getting to him.

 

"Uh..." Jimin narrows his eyes at him, "Because you're always in Kookie's room? You literally never take breaks in the break room so..." he pauses, "Hey, Hoseok, are you feeling okay?"

 

"What? Yes--I mean, no, I'm not always in Jungkook's room. And yes, I'm fine." He really wasn't fine. The stress was getting to him as was the lack of sleep and he had been running on coffee for three days straight and things didn't seem to be settling down any time soon. The entire Blue House staff had been running around trying to accommodate the new scheduling everyone was given. Not to mention, they'd hired more staff and almost all of them needed training.

 

Jungkook had been given a back up bodyguard. This one was only there when Hoseok had to go off on break (like now he was probably there) or take care of something for Jungkook, but even still his load hadn't lessened in the slightest.

 

He'd been here until 3 am last night and by the time he got home, he was too lost in his thoughts to fall asleep until at least 4:30, so by the time he woke up, he needed to gulp down a whole pot of coffee before he could get up and drag his ass to work today.

 

Jungkook had asked if he was okay, at least 50 times that day, but Hoseok couldn't really tell him anything other than the standard, 'I'm fine. Just tired. Don't worry.' He couldn't really talk to Jungkook about what had happened with Junghyun. He didn't even know what to think about what had gone down.

 

So he just tried to forget it. He was failing miserably.

 

"You don't look fine," Jimin says. He takes the coffee cup out of his hand, "When's the last time you drank something other than coffee? Like water?"

 

"Water?" Hoseok echoes, "Humans drink water?"

 

Taehyung gives a dry chuckle, "Very funny. Seriously. Something's wrong with you. What's up?"

 

Hoseok groans, wanting to just pass out and sleep for a week, but he knew that wasn't an option right now. "Nothing, Tae, seriously."

 

"Is it Jungkook?" Jimin asks.

 

Hoseok's eyes flicker to his. He hopes his face didn't give him away. "Why would you think that?"

 

Taehyung rolls his eyes, "You've kind of been avoiding him over the past couple of days."

 

"No, I haven't," Hoseok tells them, "I'm literally by his side 24/7. I'm his bodyguard. Your argument is invalid."

 

"Yeah, but..." Jimin puts a hand in the air, "Usually you're so...in tune with him. You don't act like the normal bodyguard here. I mean, most of us don't even talk to the people we're guarding. You and Jungkook are practically best friends--"

 

"Pfft, they're not friends," Taehyung pokes him with his elbows, "They're totally doing it."

 

"What?" Jimin squeals.

 

"What? No, we're not!" Hoseok yells, "Taehyung, what--"

 

"Okay, they haven't done it yet but they're totally boyfr--"

 

Hoseok smacks his hands over Taehyung's mouth, "Okay, shut up! Shut up! Not so loud, fuck!"

 

Jimin gasps, regarding Hoseok and Taehyung with shock, "You mean, it's true?!" He whispers lowly, "You and Kookie are...together....romantically?"

 

Hoseok looks helplessly between the two of them. He whimpers and sighs as he lets go of Taehyung's mouth and his shoulders sag. "You can't tell anybody okay?"

 

"What the fuck, hyung?" 

 

"I told you!"

 

"Shhhhh! Guys, not so loud!" Hoseok looks around, desperately hoping that they were alone and that none of the cooks, or god forbid, any of the other gossiping staff overheard.

 

"I can't believe this," Jimin breathes, looking at the table like it and everything else in the world had lied to him and insulted his mother.

 

"I can believe it," Taehyung murmurs, stealing a slice of sweetbread from the table across from them. "Kookie was all over Hobi hyung here and I never once saw Hobi pushing him off or telling him to stop."

 

"Yeah, but that doesn't mean that they'd be...anything else," Jimin points out.

 

"Why is this so hard for you to believe?" Taehyung asks, "You live with your long term boyfriend!"

 

"Yeah, I know and it's not that I'm shocked that they're gay--"

 

"--I'm bi--"

 

"I know, Hobi! Have I not known you for practically forever? I'm just saying that I'm shocked not because of that but because I had no idea that you two had feelings for each other," Jimin finally finishes.

 

Hoseok rubs the back of his head, "Yeah, well...it kinda snuck up on me."

 

"Since when?" Jimin asks.

 

"Since they got back from America," Taehyung answers.

 

Hoseok's eyes widen at him as Jimin gasps again. "How the fuck did you know that?"

 

"You two aren't as stealthy as think you are," Taehyung points out, "Anyone with eyes could see you two undressing each with your eyes."

 

"Hey! Why didn't you tell me?"

 

"Oh my god," Hoseok covers his ears. "I'm not hearing this."

 

"Because you would've freaked out like this," Taehyung tells Jimin, "I know that Kookie is your adopted child/puppy but you are a bit too overprotective of him."

 

"Am not!"

 

"Are too!"

 

"You kind of are, Jimin," Hoseok had to agree.

 

"See," Taehyung points to him, "That's coming from the guy who is actually doing the dirty with Kook."

 

"I'm not, Jesus Christ, can you stop saying that?!" Hoseok begs. "We're just...We haven't done anything like that okay? We're taking it slow."

 

"Doesn't explain why you've been particularly shut off since Kookie's Announcement Gala," Taehyung says, "So, tell me. What's happened?"

 

"Did you guys break up?" Jimin suddenly asks, "Oh, hyung--"

 

"We didn't break up!" Hoseok stops them, "It's nothing. I just--we just--"

 

"Go on, spit it out."

 

"We got caught, okay?" Hoseok groans, leaning down and banging his head against the table top. "We got caught by somebody important."

 

"Shit," Jimin sounded horrified, "Oh, shit...who?"

 

Hoseok lifts his head up and looks at the two of them. "Junghyun."

 

"Oh, is that all?" Jimin breathes a sigh of relief, "He'll keep it a secret, but really you should've been more careful--"

 

"It's not as simple as that, Jimin," Hoseok tries to explain.

 

"He's blackmailing you, isn't he?" Taehyung asks, hand resting on his chin.

 

Hoseok looks at him with shock again. How the hell did Taehyung know so much? Hoseok had to hand it to him, the boy noticed a lot

 

"What? Junghyun?" Jimin asks, surprised. "Why would he blackmail Hobi hyung? That doesn't make any sense--"

 

"Jimin, you were a guard for Jungkook once, and have been a guard for the President ever since, but I'm one of Junghyun's guards," Taehyung tells him, running a hand through his hair. "You don't really know what he's like. He's nothing at all like Jungkook or the Prez. Junghyun's...well, he's not exactly the kindest soul on the planet."

 

"That's an understatement," Hoseok mutters.

 

"What's he asking from you?" Taehyung asks, "What're his terms?"

 

Hoseok groans, "I don't know!  He didn't have any 'terms' he just wanted me to..."

 

"....To...?" Jimin supplies.

 

"To...to...he wanted me to break up with Jungkook," even just saying the words out loud sapped all of the energy out of him and made his eyes sting, "Otherwise he would get me fired for breaching the terms of my contract and engaging in inappropriate conduct with my protectee."

 

Both of them stared at him with mixed expressions of horror and sympathy.

 

"Fuck, hyung," Taehyung huffs out, "That's serious."

 

"I know," he buries his face in his hands, "I just--Jungkook, he...I..."

 

"I know, hyung," Taehyung pats his hand. "You have strong feelings for him. It wasn't like you could avoid it, especially if Jungkook felt the same way and was being so straightforward about it. I understand."

 

Hoseok was beginning to feel the prickling of fresh tears in his eyes.

 

"Hyung..." Jimin touches his arm, "I'm so sorry. I...I know this must be hard for you."

 

"I don't want to break up with him," Hoseok feels his voice wobbling. "I can't, not after--"

 

Jimin rubs his arm, "Have you talked to Kookie about this at all, yet?"

 

Hoseok shakes his head, sitting up after a moment, "No. I can't, I--I don't know what to say to him."

 

"Are you going to go through with it?" Taehyung asks. 

 

"I don't know what to do!" Hoseok groans, "It's all my fault, I should've never agreed to be with him. I knew that what I was doing was unprofessional and could get me fired but I--and he...fuck it was impossible to say no to him." He looks down at his hands, avoiding their eyes, "Not when I wanted him so much."

 

Jimin stares down at their hands. "Hyung? Exactly...how strong are your feelings for Jungkook?"

 

Hoseok looks up at both of them. They were waiting patiently for his answer.

 

The tears in his eyes continue to grow so he blinks rapidly to hopefully keep them at bay. He tries his best to hide them.

 

"I'm so scared," Hoseok tells them, "I'm scared to death that I might be in--"

 

Hoseok stops. Did he...? Was he seriously about to admit that he...loved Jungkook? Was he really...in love with Jungkook?

 

The look on his face must've told the pair of them all that they needed to know.

 

"Oh, hyung," Jimin's empathetic voice comes out. 

 

"Well that settles it then," Taehyung says, smacking his hand down on the table, "You can't just give into Junghyun's demands if Kookie really means that much to you. Love isn't just something you can throw away because some petty man wants to save his reputation and ruin his brother's life. Love prevails against evil, hyung. It's just the way the universe works."

 

Hoseok wants to argue. He really does, because since when has his love ever prevailed over the darkness that's constantly been following him around his entire life?

 

"I don't know if it's that simple, Tae," Hoseok says, voice sounding so bleak and hopeless. 

 

Jimin takes one of his hands and Taehyung takes the other.

 

They just sit together in silence for the rest of the break, not exchanging any words but both offering him their support and solidarity. 

 

He didn't know what to do. He needed to just go home and think.

 

*****

 

In the end, he didn't go home. Instead, he went to the market and bought some street food and ate it on his way to Yoongi's bar. Strolling in, he finds that Yoongi wasn't manning the bar yet, in fact, there was nobody there. It was too early.

 

He was given leave to go home early that day. Jungkook had asked him what was wrong but Hoseok was quick to tell him that it was nothing--he was just feeling a bit under the weather. Jimin and Taehyung corroborated with his story and Jungkook seemed to believe him.

 

He kissed him deeply before he left despite Hoseok telling him he would catch his sickness. Jungkook didn't seem to care. Hoseok wished that he could be free to kiss him back all he wanted without all of this stress and anxiety hanging over him.

 

In a way, he wasn't totally lying about feeling sick. He did have a bit of an intestine disorder that acted up and caused him a lot of pain in his stomach when he was under a lot of a stress. He had it mostly under control nowadays and he hoped that it wouldn't act up because of this situation. 

 

He hoped that this fatigue would wear off soon. But right now, all he needed was a drink. He sits down at the bar and takes his phone out, waiting for Yoongi to show up. 

 

There were so many articles regarding Jungkook on his homepage. Articles zoomed by at the blink of an eye.

 

[BREAKING] President's Nephew Revealed to be His Illegitimate Son!

 

[Opinion] Can we trust President Jeon if he's lied even about his own family?

 

Speculation Says President is Using This Well Timed Scandal to Distract From Upcoming Policy Elections

 

President's Son's Real Mother Victim of Rare Heart Disease [Read the shocking and heart wrenching details of why the President hid his illegitimate son from the world]

 

[Opinion] Why We Think the President Should Be Forgiven (Honesty the best Policy?)

 

President's Illegitimate Son Scandal Related to Policy Pushing Regarding Education?

 

[Social Media] Netizens Demand President's Impeachment Over Twitter War : Hashtag #PresidentJeonIsGettingKickedOutParty trending

 

Jeon Son Speaks Up: Read the Exclusive Interview with Jeon Jungkook here

 

President's Son an Ulzzang? See exclusive photos here!

 

Netizens Compare President's Illegitimate Son Jungkook to Hallyu Idol

 

Hoseok rolls his eyes, turning his phone screen off and placing it back in his pocket. He couldn't believe how much they had lucked out. Most of the reactions towards Jungkook's big reveal had been overall positive and understanding. Of course there were the many articles discussing the timing of this reveal and President Jeon's intentions behind hiding Jungkook.

 

Some people didn't like it, like with that dumb hashtag that wanted the President impeached but this wasn't actually an illegal deed that the President committed, therefore there weren't any grounds for him to be impeached.

 

The most amusing and irritating part of this whole thing was that Jungkook's face was plastered all over the news and now every teen girl and their mother was drooling over him, calling him 'Oppa' and comparing his natural beauty to that of their many Idols. 

 

It was funny to see because Jungkook was extremely handsome, but it was also irritating because Hoseok was feeling lowkey possessive. 

 

Still, he guessed good press was better than bad press and he would take that over people needlessly bashing Jungkook online any day. He was glad that people genuinely seemed to like him--what wasn't to like? Jungkook was a good person--funny, kind and generous. 

 

Hoseok didn't want to lose him. He really really couldn't bear to think about breaking it off with him. Not now. Not when they had just gotten together. They had only been together officially a week before the Junghyun bomb dropped! And that whole week was mostly spent preparing Jungkook for his announcement; they barely even got to spend their first week together actually, you know, together

 

They had only had that one day. Just one perfect day to themselves before everything went to shit. Hoseok just wanted another day like that. Another perfect day to reassure him that he wasn't slowly losing everything he thought he'd never have. He wished he had nothing to lose in this, but now--now he had everything to lose. His job, his freedom--

 

And Jungkook.

 

He felt guilty that even above all else--even the things that he needed to actually make a living and live in this world-- he still feared losing Jungkook the most.

 

He didn't know what to do. Talking with Jimin and Taehyung had solidified within him that he was sure in his affections for Jungkook, and that he didn't want to give him up--not for anything. But their talk hadn't help him come up with a plan--anything to help him find some way to fix this.

 

They couldn't take back Junghyun finding them on the back terrace. Oh god, the moments leading up to that point were so wonderful. Hoseok felt himself lifting off from the ground, gravity failing  him because the only thing attaching him to the Earth at that point in time was Jungkook's soft yet sturdy arms wrapped around him.

 

He had felt like nothing more than a pile of feathers--light in the breeze, dancing to the melodious music and just existing with Jungkook. For once in his life, maybe he had experienced actual true happiness.

 

But it all came crashing down. Nothing in this life ever worked out for him, no matter how hard he worked, no matter how badly he wanted it to. He had worked so hard for so long to build up the mentality that life wasn't out to get him but at times like this, all those thoughts and all that work just went to shit.

 

He needed a drink.

 

"Rough day?" Yoongi asks, popping up in front of him like a magical leprechaun here to grant his every wish. Or was that a fairy? A genie?

 

"Ughhh," Hoseok groaned, "Just give me your strongest vodka."

 

Yoongi perks an eyebrow at him, "Vodka? You never go for the strong stuff. You're a lightweight."

 

"Yeah, well, today I feel like hitting myself in the face with a hammer," Hoseok grumbles.

 

"I think it might actually be better for you if you do hit yourself in the face with a hammer rather than drink yourself into oblivion," Yoongi points out casually, "might hurt less in the morning."

 

"Can I just get a fucking drink? Please?" Hoseok had really had enough at this point. He didn't know what to do, so he was going to drink. That was what most fuck-ups did with their lives right? They drank? Maybe Hoseok should take that up. The Sport of Fucking Up. Maybe he could write a book. He'd win all the prizes and maybe he'd go on Oprah. It might be nice to meet Oprah. Wonder if she could speak Korean. 

 

Yoongi sets a drink down in front of him, and Hoseok gladly--finally-- takes a sip. He immediately could tell that it wasn't vodka but at this moment in time he didn't really care. As long as he got some alcohol in his system to numb him.

 

He downs it and then demands another, which Yoongi gives without another word. When he downs that one too, and yet again asks for another is when Yoongi finally says something.

 

"So..." he tries to start nonchalantly despite the fact that it made him look awkward as hell. Hosoek knew for a fact that Yoongi loved him some gossip, a fact very few knew since Yoongi always kept everything to himself--but the bitch loved finding out everyone's secrets. That's why his hair is so luscious. It's full of secrets.

 

"Trouble in paradise?"

 

"Shut the fuck up," Hoseok grabs his drink and downs it again. The familiar burn distracts him from his dwelling on the inevitability that everyone is going to die and all happiness is temporary.

 

"Sheesh, touchy," Yoongi remarks, slyly filling Hoseok's drinks with half less alcohol than he used to. Hoseok wanted to cut a bitch. By this time, he was going to be drinking more water than alcohol. Water didn't fuck people up. Water just drowned people.

 

On second thought...

 

"I just want to drown in vodka in peace, Yoongi, is that too much to ask?" Hoseok's pretty sure that came out more desperate than he intended it too. Oh well, he doesn't really care. Unless he does something so desperate as to promise to suck his dick or something for alcohol. Jimin wouldn't like that at all. As long as he didn't do that then he'd be okay.

 

"No, it's not," Yoongi says. Hoseok perks up. Oh? Did that mean he would continue to provide him with the poisonous nectar of hell? "But you very obviously are freaking out about something and I demand to know what."

 

"This is very unlike you, Yoongi," Hoseok points out, even though he knows for a fact that it actually was a lot like Yoongi. Yoongi was a fucking ahjumma with gossip. He was always sliding into Hoseok's dm's like "ayo got any tea for me?" and Hoseok always had to be like "no bitch bye." 

 

Even now, Hoseok didn't want to tell him, but his lips were loose and he was feeling that vodka in his gut and it was making everything feel loose. Hopefully he didn't accidentally let his bladder loose because that would just be bad for all of them. 

 

"Like you haven't seen the news," is all that comes out of Hoseok's mouth. He grabs his phone again and opens it back up to the news page. He clicks on the page with the pictures of Jungkook and comparing him to some of the biggest name idols in the business right now.

 

"Look at him!" Hoseok points at this picture, "He looks like an emo baby but he still looks fucking cute??? How does he do that??? I'm so confused???"

 

"I get it," Yoongi mutters, shoving the phone away from his face. "You think Jungkook is adorable."

 

"He's more than adorable, okay, you don't get it," Hoseok tells him, pointing into his chest, "He's got the perfect mixture of adorable sunshine bunny and sex on a stick. How am I supposed to handle that? I'm only human how am I supposed to handle sex on a stick?? I can't even handle popsicles on a stick, and you know I gag easily."

 

"First of all, no. I didn't know that." Yoongi makes a disgusted face, "And second of all,  I'm gonna pretend that you never said that. I get it okay? You wanna fuck Kookie, but why are you in here crying about it when you could be with him right now, actually doing it?"

 

"Pffft," Hoseok grumbles, his lips making that weird garble noise.  "I doubt it. You don't know anything--"

 

"I know that you and Jungkook are something to each other," Yoongi says, "Something like how me and Jimin are."

 

Hoseok scoffs, "Yeah. Because you and Jimin are practically married but me and Kookie we're--...we--we're..."

 

Fuck, his eyes were leaking. 

 

No, no, no he needed to shovel all this water back into his eyes. It stung him, ouch, were his tears actually the vodka come back to haunt him? For wanting something and getting it and then ruining it?

 

"Hey, Hobi, don't--shit, uh, Hobi don't cry, uh--" Yoongi stows his glasses where he was making drinks to the side and quickly pats his back--trying to comfort him. When it doesn't seem to help, he quickly goes around the bar and rushes to his side. He sits right next to him and gives him a hug. Yoongi could get like this sometimes. Nice and cuddly. It wasn't often but Hoseok liked to think that he was one of the few people that Yoongi actually gave a shit enough about to forgo the stoic personality and reach out to him.

 

Hoseok cries into Yoongi's shirt, "I'm gonna lose him, hyung. I can't lose him."

 

"Hey, hey, " Yoongi runs his fingers over Hoseok's back, "I'm sure that's not true. What happened? Let's see if there's anything we can do, okay?"

 

"I don't know if there is anything I can do, Yoongi." Hoseok sniffles loudly, "I'm gonna lose him and it's all my fault."

 

"Hobi, seriously what happened?" Yoongi's voice sounded so concerned and worried that Hoseok couldn't help but give in.

 

"He caught us," he says.

 

"Who caught who?" 

 

"His brother--Jungkook's brother, Junghyun, he caught us k-kissing and dancing," Hoseok sniffles again, "At the gala a few days ago."

 

Yoongi whistles low, still patting Hoseok's back, "Shit. I'm guessing he didn't take it too well? What, is he homophobic or something?"

 

Hoseok nods, "That, and he's insanely jealous of Jungkook. I don't know why, but the man has it out for him. Ever since I met him, he's done nothing but badmouth Jungkook and tell me to watch my back around him. It doesn't make any sense! And-and, when he saw us together, he told me to...he told me to break..."

 

Hoseok couldn't even find it in himself to say it out loud.

 

"Break up?" Yoongi supplies.

 

"Break his heart."

 

Hoseok couldn't speak anymore, the tears were coming too fast. Yoongi didn't say anything either, soaking it in.

 

After another few moments of Hoseok feeling sorry for himself, Yoongi speaks again.

 

"Well, obviously, you're not going to fucking do that."

 

Hoseok startles, pushing back and away from Yoongi who was looking at him like he was the biggest dumbass on the planet.

 

"What?"

 

"You aren't going to break his heart. No, fuck that. Why should you listen to that bastard?" Yoongi asks, outrage boiling on his face.

 

"Because he threatened to not only out Jungkook, but to get me fired and sent to prison," Hoseok argues, "Either way, I lose in this situation."

 

"Are you stupid?" Yoongi asks, "Do you not realize you are the one in power here?"

 

"Uh...no?"

 

"You said that this guy is obsessed with appearances right?"

 

"Well, I didn't actually say that but yeah--"

 

"Then that means he doesn't want your relationship with Jungkook being outed either, correct? He doesn't want the world to know he has a gay brother," Yoongi says.

 

Hoseok nods, "Yes, but I don't understand how that..."

 

"Think about it," Yoongi demands, "If he goes and tries to get you fired, Jungkook is going to be there right by your side to defend you. To deny it. It's his word against both of yours and now that Jungkook is a public figure in the press, they would have a field day if this got out! There's no way in hell the President's advisers would let him expose that."

 

"Yeah, but--Yoongi, you don't get it. I did break my contract. I'm his bodyguard I can't be his boyfriend. I can't touch him the way I want to touch him, I can't be with him that way, I--"

 

"Bullshit."

 

"What?"

 

"I said," Yoongi enunciates, "Mother. Fucking. Bullshit. It's bullshit! I don't see why you two can't be together if--"

 

"You just--" Hoseok stands up, "You just don't get! Yoongi this isn't something that I can mess with. I'm not in this just to dick around with Jungkook, he means something to me and I can't just--I'm building a wall between him and his family. Even if I could get his brother to to back off, he still has his father and his mother--who I know is gonna be against it--and the entire country breathing down his neck. I can't live like that Yoongi, I just can't, I--"

 

Yoongi stands up, taking his hand, effectively shutting him up. He'd officially lost all energy and his buzz from the alcohol was wearing off. Now he could feel all his emotions bubbling to the surface and erupting out of him like a volcano and it was impossible to stop feeling.

 

"I think you need to take some time off and really ask yourself if you really want to be with Jungkook--"

 

"--I do, it's just--"

 

"Let me finish," Yoongi stops him. "If you really want to be with Jungkook for the long haul. He isn't someone you can have a regular casual 'let's see where this takes us' relationship with. It's just not possible--and even before this all came out about him and his family I know that it was always like that. Jungkook, he's all or nothing. If you want him--no, if you want to be with him, then you have to be all or nothing too."

 

Hoseok stares at him with wide eyes.

 

"Talk to him, Hobi," Yoongi pats him on the cheek, "Find out whether you two can make this relationship last despite all the setbacks that are bound to come your way. Even past this brother thing, there are most likely going to be more problems down the road--more stress. If you really love Jungkook the way I believe you do, then you two will find a way."

 

"Yoongi, I--" Hoseok didn't even know what to say. He had no arguments, "He--"

 

"Just, " Yoongi sighs, "Just talk to him."

 

Hoseok nods and Yoongi pours him a glass of water and brings him a basket of fries.


"Now," Yoongi says as he tucks in and pours himself  a drink, "Tell me about how all this happened. I gotta say, I wasn't expecting either of you to man up so soon and confess..."

 

******

 

Hoseok clocks out, putting his uniform back in his locker and closing it up before walking out. He was the last one here aside from the people who worked night shifts and were just clocking in. 

 

Hoseok wants to go home for the day. He wants to just go back and shut the world away again and wallow in his own self-pity and loathing--but he can't. He couldn't bring himself to walk out the door when he knew that if he just turned and walked in the other direction he would find himself in front of Jungkook's room.

 

Jungkook, whom he had barely saw yesterday and barely today, despite Jungkook trying to get his attention during lunch and dinner. He had felt bad, but he just needed some time to get his thoughts together. 

 

Yoongi had been right.

 

He did wish that he had gotten hit in the head with a hammer instead of drinking all that vodka.

 

But he had also been right in that he really needed to talk to Jungkook. He hadn't spoken properly to the boy in almost four days now and it was beginning to get to his head. He finds himself at Jungkook's door soon enough. It looked larger and more daunting than it ever had before. He didn't know if it was the situation that was intimidating or the millions of ways he was imagining fucking this up.

 

He almost turns around twice, but then he forces himself to knock, having a mini panic attack when after two seconds the door hadn't opened. 

 

But when it does and Hoseok sees Jungkook's tired face go from sluggish and waning to vibrant and shining with delight, he feels a little less fearful. Looking at Jungkook's face truly for what seemed like the first time in decades made a warm content feeling sweep through him, loosening up his muscles and allowing his shoulders to relax.

 

"Hobi," Jungkook smiles so brightly at him that Hoseok wants to cry. He missed Jungkook so fucking much even though he had seen him every day. 

 

"Hey Kookie," he lifts a hand with a half-guilty half-exhilarated smile. 

 

"Why are you knocking?" Jungkook asks him, pushing the door out of the way and motioning for him to come in. "You know you don't have to knock after hours."

 

Hoseok rubs the back of his neck. The truth had been that he was so anxious about this whole thing that he just had to knock to buy him so breathing time. He couldn't tell that to Jungkook though.

 

"I, uh, I didn't know if your dad might have come to visit you, so I knocked," Hoseok explains. It was a good excuse seeing as Jungkook and his father had been spending more time together recently. 

 

"Ah. That makes sense."

 

After fully walking in, Jungkook closes the door behind them and Hoseok stops in the middle of the room. Back to him, Hoseok readies himself for a hard conversation. He turns around and then--

 

Jungkook captures his lips with a swoop, pressing him back all the way until the backs of his legs hit the foot of Jungkook's bed and he's falling backwards. 

 

Jungkook's kissing him like Hoseok had been away at war for years and this was their reunion after so long. Hoseok finds himself melting into Jungkook's touch and he's craving it--Jungkook's touch. He wanted to feel him closer, molded against his body until there was no space left.

 

It really did feel like a life time since they had been so close, that all thoughts of talking to Jungkook about what his brother was forcing Hoseok to do slipped out of his head. The only thing he could register in his mind was the feel of Jungkook's hungry lips on his and his warm body against his and the unbridled love he felt.

 

He let Jungkook take the lead, kissing down his cheeks and to his jaw and neck. He licked and sucked his mouth against Hoseok's skin and moaned against his skin--or were those moans coming out of Hoseok's mouth?

 

Jungkook's strong hands trailed down his body, squeezing his hips and his thighs and Hoseok wraps his legs around Jungkook's waist as the younger presses them both harder into the bed. Hoseok's arms wrap around Jungkook's neck and the two of them reconnect their mouths. It's a mess of tongues and lips and moans but it tastes so good and feels so so fucking good that Hoseok felt delirious.

 

"Missed you so much," Jungkook moans against his lips, "Felt like so long."

 

"Missed you too," Hoseok moans, pulling away and pulling Jungkook's head to his mouth. He kisses his hair and his temple several times before proceeding to kiss him hotly on the mouth again, "God, I missed you."

 

Jungkook dives back in and sucks on his bottom lip before mouthing down his neck and attaching his kisses to his collarbones. When Jungkook starts rocking forward over him, his crotch brushes over Hoseok's and he lets out a particularly lewd moan that melts into Jungkook's ears.

 

His hands are bunching at Hoseok's sides, trying to pull his shirt up and Hoseok lets him. Jungkook's now mouthing at his chest, whispering words of affection into his skin and making him shiver. He sucks on his skin, tongue lapping out to soothe the slight redness that appears on his beautiful tan skin.

 

He kisses his stomach all over, and Hoseok feels his stomach concaving in from the ticklish brush of Jungkook's lips over him like fine silk feathers. Jungkook's lips find the little trail of hairs leading even further down to his crotch and he kisses it so hotly that Hoseok pretty sure all of his bones have melted into jelly. There's no way he's going to be able to move after that.

 

But then Jungkook pops the button of his jeans. 

 

Hoseok jerks up so fast he gives himself whiplash.

 

"Whoa, wait wait wait wait, Jungkookie wait just--" Hoseok crawls away from Jungkook, pushing his shirt that had risen to his armpits down his chest. "Slow down."

 

"What's the matter?" Jungkook asks, eyes scrunching in confusion. "What's wrong?"

 

"Nothing," Hoseok says automatically, then regrets it instantly when Jungkook crawls up towards him again and almost dives back in for another kiss. 

 

"Then why did you stop?"

 

"It's nothing, it's just--" He manages to stop Jungkook from outright attacking him with kisses again, but it took all of his fragile strength and he didn't know if he could keep it up anymore after this. He needed to tell Jungkook right now--he couldn't be here making out with him and maybe doing other things when he still hasn't talked to him about what's happened. "No, no, it's not nothing. I really need to talk to you about something. It's important."

 

Jungkook freezes, eyes widen in fear and concern. "What's wrong? Talk to me. Tell me."

 

Hoseok grabs Jungkook's hand and pulls him forward until they were both sitting parallel on the side of his bed facing the window. 

 

"Something happened," Hoseok starts off slowly, "I'm sorry I didn't tell you about it earlier but I didn't know what to do and--"

 

"Hold on," Jungkook stops him, "Just tell me what happened, okay? Take your time."

 

Hoseok groans, "Something happened with Junghyun."

 

Jungkook stiffens, asking cautiously, "What do you mean?"

 

"I mean at the gala, something happened. Something with Junghyun," he explains. Jungkook's hand in his squeezes almost painfully. Hoseok looks up at Jungkook's face only to find an expression on his face he had only ever seen once before. That of barely concealed rage.

 

"What the fuck did he do to you?" Jungkook almost seethes, "Why didn't you tell me earlier? I told you he wasn't to be trusted! I swear to god, I'm gonna--"

 

"He wasn't happy about you and me," Hoseok tries to place a comforting hand on Jungkook's shoulder but it doesn't seem to help. Jungkook's shoulders were still tense with anger. "He..."

 

Hoseok had three options right now. He could tell Jungkook that his older brother didn't want him dating Hoseok because he wanted him to be miserable or he could tell Jungkook that his older brother didn't want him dating Hoseok because he didn't approve of them. Or he could forgo a reason entirely.

 

"He wants us to break up," is what Hoseok goes for in the end.

 

"What?!" Jungkook squirms underneath his hands, body overflowing with anger that his body was fidgeting, unable to contain the emotion, "Who the fuck does he think he is? He doesn't have any control over who I am with! He doesn't get a say in anything with me! I'm so fucking--"

 

He stops when he gets a look at Hoseok's face. His mouth opens but no words seem to come out. He's still raving mad, but now there's an underlying fear in his expression.

 

"Why are you looking at me like that?" Jungkook asks, his voice wobbly in a way that Hoseok hates because it means that Jungkook's legitimately scared. "Don't tell me your...actually thinking about it? Hoseok, what the fuck?!"

 

The anger was back. Anger in one person leads to the need to defend oneself in the other person. 

 

"I don't know if we have a choice!" Hoseok's voice was getting gradually louder, more upset. "You should know better than anybody that I'm your bodyguard! I've broken a huge rule in my contract by being with you like this--touching you like this--and Junghyun knows it!"

 

"So, what?" Jungkook yells, "Is he threatening you or-or--"

 

"Yes, okay? He is. He's threatening to fire me for breaking the contract and to send me to prison!"

 

"He can't fucking do that!" Jungkook cries.

 

"Can't he?" Hoseok yells back. "I'm pretty sure he can do whatever he wants! What we're doing is against the rules and he can use it against you--"

 

"I don't give a fuck!" Jungkook argues, "I don't care that he could out us, I'm not just going to fucking break up with you. That's not happening!"

 

"Well, what are we supposed to do?" Hoseok asks, "He has the power to just go to the authorities and get me fired and leave you completely untouched."

 

"Yeah, I know that you have more to lose because of this but aren't we more important than that?" Jungkook asks, eyes narrowing in anger, "Or what? Is your job suddenly more important to you than I am? Than we are?"

 

"What? No! Jungkook's that's not what I'm trying to say! Of fucking course our relationship is important to me but we need to talk about the fact that it's not just our relationship that's in jeopardy here, it's your life and mine!"

 

"That's such shit!" Jungkook yells, standing up and suddenly putting as much space between himself and Hoseok as possible, "You're just using this as a perfect excuse to let you get out of this relationship! I mean, of course! I'm not fucking convenient anymore! Fine then! Go fucking guard somebody else if all you care about is your job!"

 

"Why are you being so fucking selfish right now?" Hoseok yells, standing up and walking closer to Jungkook. He felt like he was slowly losing any cool he might've had. He was hanging onto a rope of a collapsing bridge and he was losing his grip and slowly slipping. "I'm not trying to break up with you! I'm just trying to tell you that maybe we should try to think objectively about if this is the best thing to be doing now with your status being so volatile and Junghyun breathing down our fucking necks and--"

 

"You're lying!" Jungkook screams so loudly that it startles him. His eyes widen and he realizes that Jungkook was trembling and had tears trailing down his face that he was stubbornly refusing to wipe away. "You're fucking lying! You don't want me anymore, I know it, that's--"

 

"Jungkook, that's not what I'm saying! If you would just listen to me--"

 

"Get out!" Jungkook screams.

 

Hoseok stops, stunned.

 

"W-What?" he stutters, his own voice betraying him right now.

 

"I said get out! Get out! I don't ever want to see you again!" Jungkook was crying full out now and Hoseok wanted nothing more than to hug him and comfort him but he felt like he was being dangled above a boiling pot of water and at any moment he would be dropped in and burn to death.

 

"But, J-Jungkook, I--"

 

"I said get the fuck out!" he wails so loudly that it almost shatters Hoseok's ear drums. It startles him so violently that he stumbles back. It triggers the movement in his feet and before he knows it, he's grabbing his jacket and running out of Jungkook's room with such speed that it surprises him. He slams the door on the way out and doesn't stop moving until he reaches his apartment across town.

 

It's only when he closes the door and relives everything that just happened that a bullet rips through his heart and he sinks against the door and cries his heart out.

 

********

 

The booming slam echoes in the stale air and it pierces through Jungkook's eardrums like a shotgun to his temple. 

 

He breathes hard, so fast that it's almost like taking two breaths at once. He accidentally backs into the wall, his back hitting the wall with such force that it draws a sharp cry of pain from his throat. 

 

This wasn't happening. No, no, no this isn't happening.

 

"No," Jungkook whimpers as he brings his hands up to clutch at the ends of his hair. "N-No..."

 

What the fuck did he just do?

 

He's pulling so hard at his hair that it makes his vision blurry as he sinks to the ground.

 

Hoseok was gone. He just left. It was Jungkook's fault. He had scared him off. It was all his fault. 

 

"Oh my god," he knocks his head back against the wall, as his voice cracks and his lips tug violently down involuntarily. He hits his head against the wall once more--twice more. And then his eyes slide shut as the rest of his body physically sinks into the floor just like his heart. 

 

He squeezes his eyes shut and feels stinging tears sliding down his face. 

 

"Fuck!" he slams his head back against the wall and relishes in the pain it brings him. His chest was hurting so fucking badly right now and he needed something else to distract from the pain, it was too much.

 

Hoseok was gone.

 

Why the fuck did he--why did he...oh god, he was such an idiot and now Hoseok was never going to want to see him again. 

 

His chest seizes up as he coughs out a painful sob. Shit, fucking fuck! Everything hurt and Jungkook has one last brief thought--so fast he forgets it as soon as he thinks it--moments before he passes out. 

 

He was in love with Hoseok, and he had lost him. And he had never felt such pain in his life.

 

--

 

Somehow, the next morning, Jungkook wakes back up in his bed. He's groggy and his face feels crusty with dried tears sealing his eyes shut and he hiccups only for it to turn into a groan. His head hurts as if he had downed an entire pack of beer. But he hadn't drank last night. Had he?

 

As he sits up in bed, he tries to remember when he actually went to sleep. 

 

The memory hits him like a ton of bricks. 

 

"Oh god," Jungkook's suddenly seized with a wave of nausea. He leaps off his bed faster than he thought possible and sprints to his en suite bathroom so fast that he probably could've won Olympic gold with his record time. 

 

After emptying his stomach into the white porcelain, Jungkook struggles to his feet. He grasps his palms hard over the edges of his sink as he hauls himself upright. His head hangs and he struggles to open his eyes fully, having a hard time adjusting to the bright sharp light of the bathroom.

 

When he finally does look up, he stares at his face. The sides of his mouth were turned down so far he looked like a caricature. His eyes were swollen and sunken in and he had dried tears crusted on his face that itched and made him want to scratch his face off.

 

He feels his stomach heave again when the memory of last night pushes itself back into his mind like a bulldozer. He turns the tap water on and squeezes his eyes shut trying his fucking best to not cry again. He felt so horrible, and he didn't know if he was going to be able to leave his room but a loud notification from outside the bathroom gets his attention.

 

He scoops his hand under the water and watches as the cool water pools in his palm. He brings it to his lips and drinks the cool water. It helps ease his raw throat a bit. He then splashes the water over his face and flinches at the shocking impact. It sobers him.

 

And deep feelings of guilt and regret wash over him.

 

Fuck, what had he done?! 

 

He couldn't believe it. The one relationship he had ever truly felt was real in his life and he had gone and fucked it up. He had just been so fucking mad last night. Hearing Hoseok tell him what his brother did had set him off like an inactive volcano waiting for that one shift in temperature at the Earth's core. It hadn't taken much for Jungkook to be set off. 

 

He maybe might've been able to reign himself in but then Hoseok had started talking about listening to his brother and Jungkook had felt like the rug was being yanked out from underneath him.

 

He couldn't lose Hoseok, he just fucking couldn't. Not after all this. Not once he was finally happy with where he was in his life. Couldn't he catch a breath? Couldn't he be happy for two motherfucking seconds before the universe decided to fuck him over raw just like normal?

 

Some of that anger still resided inside him from last night but it was cooling down and now all he just felt was the ashy sickening regret.

 

He drags himself out of the bathroom and back into his room. He picks up his phone from where he had dropped it on his bed. He has one new message from Jimin.

 

To: Kook

Hey Jungkook, Hoseok called in sick today so I'm going to be covering his shift today. Hope that's okay. Have you talked to him?

 

He shudders a sigh and rubs his temples. God, he was such a fucking idiot. He couldn't even really remember half of the horrible things he had said to Hoseok last night. All he knew was that he felt terrible for all of them.

 

He texts Jimin back.

 

To: Jiminie Hyung

Okay. No, I haven't talked to him.

 

That didn't mean that he didn't know why he was calling in sick today. There was a possibility that he really was sick, but it was more likely that Hoseok needed a day away from him. Needed some time to be alone. That was what Jungkook wanted right now too. He needed to gather his thoughts. They both did. Jungkook didn't want to end his relationship with Hoseok, but as of last night he wasn't sure where they stood. 

 

They hadn't broken up...right?

 

He had told Hoseok that he didn't ever want to see him again. That wasn't true! No, he could never mean that--not with Hoseok. Hoseok was--he meant so much to him. 

 

His phone buzzes with a new message.

 

To: Kook

He didn't tell you why he's not coming in? Gotta say I'm surprised.

 

Jungkook feels prickly. Could Jimin stop being so nosy for once in his life? He catches himself in the middle of his mean thought about Jimin and instantly feels bad. Fuck! This is why he needed the day to himself to calm down! He knew he was still angry. Especially at Junghyun. 

 

Fuck...if he saw him at all today there was no telling what Jungkook would do in retaliation.

 

To: Jiminie Hyung

No he didn't okay. I don't know so stop asking.

 

To: Kook

Okay, jeez. Touchy.

 

Jungkook doesn't bother to reply. He gets another text from Jimin anyway.

 

To: Kook

You know your schedule for today, right? I'll be there in about 15 minutes to escort you to the office.

 

Jungkook huffs. The office. He forgot he was being forced to go there today. He knew he was now a public figure but did he really have to go to all these meetings about policy and when he didn't even have any say in it?

 

"It's a part of being the President's son," his father had told him, "You need to be as well versed in policy as even I am."

 

Jungkook sighs. Maybe he should've just accepted his pitiful fate instead of being an ungrateful little shit and brought all this boredom on himself. 

 

Sure enough, Jungkook is almost done sluggishly getting ready when there's a knock at his door. Jungkook opens it and finds Jimin standing there. He gives Jungkook his usual huge smile, but it falls quickly.

 

"What the hell, Kookie, you look like shit!" he curses, stepping in and closing the door behind him. Jungkook ducks his head and avoids his gaze. "What the hell happened?"

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "Nothing. I'm fine."

 

"You're obviously not fine," Jimin says, standing too close to him and looking at him a bit too closely, "You look like you went and got shitfaced last night, passed out in a ditch and had to have a stray dog drag you home."

 

"That bad?" Jungkook can't help but asks. 

 

Jimin nods. "You didn't, did you?"

 

Jungkook hears the warning in his voice and he quickly denies it. "No, I fucking didn't."

 

"Good." Jimin stops then, looking at him again, "Then what the hell happened, Jungkook?"

 

"Nothing, okay? I'm just a little bit tired."

 

"Bullshit."

 

"Yeah, well what the fuck do you know?" Jungkook snaps back harshly. Jimin takes a step back, hurt in his eyes and Jungkook buries his face in his hands and groans, "Fuck, I'm sorry hyung. I didn't mean to snap at you. I'm just--I just--"

 

Jimin places a tentative hand on his arm. "Kookie...did something happen with Hoseok last night?"

 

Jungkook stiffens. He hadn't wanted to tell anyone about this. He wasn't even sure what had happened himself. He didn't want to talk about it.

 

"I don't want to talk about it," he tells Jimin, knowing that would be enough to satisfy his curiosity and enough to make him back off. Jimin was always one to test boundaries, but as soon as he felt he pushed too far, he would apologize and take a step back.

 

"Okay..." he pats Jungkook's arm again, giving it a gentle squeeze that Jungkook oddly finds comforting, "But if you need to talk at all, I'm all ears."

 

Jungkook nods, appreciating the gesture. "Let's just get today done with."

 

---

 

He missed Hoseok. This entire meeting was so boring and as much as Jungkook tried to pay attention for his father's sake, he couldn't help his thoughts that kept drifting back to Hoseok. His heart hurt so much. He felt so bad. Slowly his memories had come back of what exactly had gone down.

 

Hoseok had tried to talk to him about the situation but he had taken it so badly that it completely spun out of control. Hoseok had just tried to tell him what had happened and tried to ask what they should do but Jungkook had taken it all wrong. At least, he hoped he had taken it wrong. 

 

The actual idea of Hoseok wanting to break up with him hurt him so much that he had to grit his teeth to drive the pain away. 

 

He didn't think Hoseok wanted to break up, but he was right. At this point in time what choice did they have? Junghyun was threatening everything. Not only Jungkook's reputation--which frankly he didn't give a flying fuck about--but Hoseok's job. Could he really go to jail for breaking the contract? Jungkook didn't even think someone could press charges on him unless Jungkook corroborated some fucked up story, which he was not going to do.

 

He just needed to go back and try to talk to Hoseok--rationally this time--and try to come up with a solution. He couldn't let Jonghyun do this to them.

 

His eyes flickered to the other side of the room where Junghyun was sitting, a blank look on his face, listening to the man taking the floor and talking. He doesn't look Jungkook's way but he knows that he knows he's watching.

 

He couldn't help the flames of hatred that licked at his insides. How could Junghyun do this to him? He thought they were brothers...Sure they didn't often get along and very rarely spoke to each other outside of the presence of their mother or father, but still. Jungkook never thought Junghyun would stoop so low.

 

The meeting ends after an excruciatingly long time and Jungkook gets up. He looks around for Jimin so they can get out of there as fast as possible. Spotting him by the door, he makes his way over. 

 

"Let's go," he tells Jimin and tries to leave but Jimin sticks his hand out to block his way. 

 

"What?"

 

"Actually," Jimin stops him looking somewhat guilty. "Your father wants to see you in his office."

 

"Oh. Okay." Jungkook starts to move again, but Jimin stops him again.

 

"What now?"

 

"He wants me to escort you and your brother because he wants to talk to both of you," Jimin tells him. Jungkook stiffens instantly. Why did their father want to speak to both of them? What could he possibly want with both of them?

 

"Jungkook?" Jimin questions, noticing the look on his face, "Is something wrong?"

 

"I can't be near Junghyun right now," he says through gritted teeth, hoping it's enough for an explanation. Obviously, it isn't.

 

"What? Why?"

 

He gets a message at that moment. "Change of plans. We're to meet Junghyun and his guards outside your father's office."

 

Jungkook sighs in relief. Little battles. That's all he could handle right now.

 

He doesn't say another word but walks out of the room, Jimin following behind him. They walk quickly, Jungkook wanting to get there faster so they could get in and out. He hoped his father didn't want to speak to them both at the same time. That was just asking for him to lose his mind.

 

When he arrives, Junghyun is standing outside his father's office with his guards on either side of him, including Taehyung. As they get closer Junghyun doesn't acknowledge them. Taehyung turns his head and nods at the both of them but then immediately turns back so that Junghyun doesn't notice.

 

Jungkook clenches his jaw as he moves to stand relatively near his brother. Close enough that it doesn't look odd but far enough away that he doesn't have to be within reaching distance. Jungkook steals looks of barely concealed rage and Junghyun continues to ignore him. When his other guard goes inside to announce to their father that they're there, he comes back and tells them that their father needed to finish up his current meeting and he would be with them in a short moment.

 

They are left standing out stiffly in the hallway exactly how Jungkook was hoping to avoid. After a few moments, Junghyun turns his head and glances at him. He also turns slightly and eyes Jimin standing off to the side of him, in the standard bodyguard position.

 

He sniffs a laugh, "What happened to your other guard?"

 

Jungkook clenches his teeth and breathes out harshly through his nose. How dare he bring Hoseok up knowing he was the reason they were in this huge fight? He balls his fist and forces himself not to punch Junghyun in the fucking face.

 

"He's sick today."

 

He doesn't elaborate. Junghyun laughs again, a condescending harsh laugh. 

 

"Of course he is," he rolls his eyes and sniffs like he smelled something disgusting, "Incompetent in every definition of the word. I would have been rid of him entirely by now. I don't know how you can keep trash like that around. But then again, you always were a bit of a sentimental hoarder weren't you baby brother?"

 

There's the tiniest of gasps from behind him and Jungkook's knows immediately that it's from Jimin. He knows Taehyung must be silently fuming right about now too. Still, nobody acknowledges the outburst and they fall back into stiff silence soon enough. Jungkook stares holes into the ground, wanting it spontaneously combust before his eyes.

 

This was all Junghyun's fault. Jungkook felt his muscles twitching in every part of his body, wanting to move forward and just do something to Junghyun. His knuckles ached to be split open. 

 

Jungkook doesn't say anything. He bites his tongue because he knows the second he says something, Junghyun will get the response he wants. He can't allow him even that tiniest victory. As much as it hurt his pride to hear him say those things about Hoseok and about himself, it hurt his heart more. Junghyun didn't know shit about them. 

 

If anything, instead of antagonizing him Junghyun was fueling his determination to prove him wrong. Prove to him that he couldn't get the best of him. He still wasn't sure why his brother was doing this, but now he had a bit of an idea. 

 

He felt sorry for his brother, truly. How horrible it must feel to be the one left behind. To become the odd one out of his family. Not like Jungkook could empathize at all.

 

When the door to his father's office opens up, his own guard calls Junghyun in. Speaking to Jungkook, they ask him if he could wait for just a few more minutes and then his father will speak with him too. Junghyun walked into the office without hesitation. Taehyung follows slowly behind him. Right before he's about to walk in and close the door, he stops momentarily and looks to Jungkook and Jimin. He gives Jungkook a look that says "I'm sorry" and Jimin a look that looks weirdly like "I told you so."

 

When the two of them are alone waiting in the hallway, Jungkook finally lets out the breath he had been holding. He turns around to check on Jimin. The older looked like he was trying desperately to hold himself back from saying something.

 

"Just say it."

 

"You can't listen to him, Kookie!" Jimin bursts, just as Jungkook was expecting him to. He raises an eyebrow though. Jimin's never said a word against Junghyun before. But that was typical of Jimin as well. He was kind to everyone until they gave him a reason to dislike them. Junghyun must've done that just now.

 

"I'm not." Jungkook shrugs his shoulders, "I haven't been listening to him for years."

 

Jimin nods with fervor, exhaling but still looked a bit on edge. Jungkook wished he would just come out and tell him when he wanted to say something.

 

"Jimin," Jungkook puts a hand on his shoulder, "I've known you for such a long time. You are one of my closest friends. I'm a bit offended you don't feel like you can tell me things. I thought we were closer than that."

 

Jimin bits his bottom lip, running a hand through his hair as per habit. "That's not it, Jungkookie. Really, it's just--"

 

"Just what?" Jungkook prompts.

 

Jimin sighs, scratching his forehead, "Okay, fine. Don't be mad but..."

 

Jungkook blinks, waiting.

 

"Hoseok...kind of...told us what happened with Junghyun," he says and then closes his eyes and braces himself for backlash. Jungkook just stares, eyes wide.

 

When Jimin peeks his eyes open again, Jungkook has his mouth open and he looks suprised. "He...told you about how Junghyun is threatening him? About...us?"

 

Jimin nods, "He didn't mean to tell us. We found out. Or well, Taehyung found out."

 

"Typical."

 

"I know right? But Hoseok just looked so desolate and depressed and conflicted," Jimin tells him, face sympathetic, "I don't know what happened last night between you two but I know that whatever happened, he never wanted to hurt you."

 

Jungkook sighs. He licks his lips and rubs a hand over his eyes. "He...I--I was the one who hurt him. I didn't listen to him and his feelings. He was just trying to explain to me what was happening and talk about options but I got...I got mad."

 

"Oh, Kookie..." Jimin's voice caresses him, but at the same time it makes Jungkook feel worse.

 

"I kicked him out," he whispers, voice too wobbly to speak too loudly, "I thought he wanted to break up and I, I got scared and angry and I--I told him I didn't ever want to see him again."

 

Jimin closes his eyes for a long moment as if processing the news, the opens them to look at Jungkook.

 

"Is that what you really want? To be done with Hoseok?"

 

"No!" Jungkook barks out like a reflex. "I don't want to lose him. I want him still. I lo--"

 

He stops. 

 

He...he loved him? He...loved...Hoseok?

 

It all made sense. Why he had taken the idea of breaking up so badly. Why his chest hurt so much thinking about losing him. Why he felt so lonely during the week when Hoseok and he had been separated because of other obligations. Why kissing Hoseok felt like no other feeling in the world and just being in his presence seemed to both calm him and excite him beyond all measure. He hadn't ever felt something like this in his life and...

 

He'd be damned if he was going to lose it.

 

Jimin smiles at him. "You love him, huh?"

 

Jungkook can't figure out how to get his mouth to move so he could say something. He didn't even know what to say even if he could speak, it would probably just come out a weird garble of sounds. In the end he just nods his head, because yeah...he was in love with Hoseok.

 

"Well then I guess it's a good thing he's in love with you too," Jimin says wistfully, eyes glowing with something. Jungkook's eyes jerk up to meet his.

 

"What do you mean? Did he tell you that? How do you know--?"

 

His frantic questions are interrupted by a light chuckle from his short hyung who just pats him on the cheek like he used to do when Jungkook was much younger. "He didn't need to tell me. Or anyone for that matter. It's written all over his face."

 

"Yeah, but--"

 

The door to his father's office opens again and Taehyung and Junghyun exit. Junghyun gives him one last hostile look and then turns in the opposite direction and walks off without a word. Taehyung follows behind him. His father's guard extends a hand to usher Jungkook in.

 

"We'll talk later," Jimin tells him and Jungkook nods. His head was still reeling from this recently revelation. Is this what having an epiphany felt like? He always thought those would be more...cosmic and mind blowing. Although, he guessed this was pretty mind blowing in and of itself. 

 

Jimin waits at the other end of the office with other secret service agents. Jungkook walks in and his father immediately stands to give him a hug. Jungkook is a bit surprised but he doesn't reject it. In fact, he holds his father close to him and smiles despite everything else to feel his father's warmth.

 

"Hi, Appa," he says as he sits down.

 

"Hello, son, how are you today?"

 

Jungkook sits down on the opposite couch from his father and gives a grimace. "Could be better."

 

His father nods, looking a little bit disgruntled, "Is everything okay?"

 

Jungkook debates telling him. "It's nothing. What was it you called me in here to talk about?"

 

His father scrunches his eyebrows, "Well, I wanted to talk to Junghyun about how his studies are coming along since he's going to be graduating soon. It was a rather quick chat as you just saw."

 

Jungkook nods. "And me?"

 

"I wanted to check in with you and see how you are doing now with all these new responsibilities," his father says. "I know it can be overwhelming so I wanted to make sure that you were doing okay."

 

"Yeah. It's a lot," Jungkook nods, "but I think I'm handling it okay."

 

"Yeah?" his father looks relieved. "That's good to hear. Although, I did want you to know that if you have any problems or you need to talk you can always come to me."

 

Jungkook nods again, keeping silent. He tries to give a genuine smile to his father, but it's difficult. "Okay. I will."

 

The room is silent for a minute and his father stares at him with searching eyes. He clears his throat and turns to the other guards in the room.

 

"If you would excuse us, gentlemen, I'd like to have a word alone with my son." The bodyguards bow and exit the room, Jimin giving him one last encouraging look as he leaves. Jungkook stares at his father in surprise.

 

"Is everything okay, son?" he asks, getting up from his chair and moving to sit next to Jungkook on the couch. He places a hand on his knee and pats it twice. "You don't look okay."

 

He was the first one today other than Jimin to tell him that he didn't look okay. He was one of the only ones today to look at him and see the dark bags under his eyes and the frown that seemed to be carved into his skin.

 

"No, Appa, I'm okay. Really." His voice cracks on the last word and he immediately knows that he's been found out. There was no escaping this.

 

"Are you sure?" his father asks, nothing but concern in his eyes. He then looks back to the door where the guards had just disappeared. "Where's Jung Hoseok-sshi? Isn't he your usual guard?"

 

Jungkook swallows and curls his fingers on top of his leg. "He, uh, didn't show up to work today."

 

"Oh? Is he sick? Have you talked to him?" his father asks. Jungkook is a bit surprised by the actual concern for Hoseok he sees in his father's eyes. It makes Jungkook feel bad for trying to lie to him and for once, he feels the need to just have his father listen to him.

 

He takes a breath, "Actually, no. I don't think he's sick. I haven't talked to him but I'm pretty sure that the reason he called in sick today was not because he is actually sick but because...he's avoiding me."

 

His father looks taken aback, "Avoiding you? But why? What happened?"

 

Jungkook appreciates that his father didn't immediate place blame on either one of them. He didn't say 'What did you do?' like his mother or brother would have and he didn't immediately say 'What did he do to you?' and place the blame on Hoseok either. It just made Jungkook want to tell him the entire truth even more.

 

"We--I, it..." Jungkook sighs, "Appa, I have something to tell you okay and I need you to hear me out. Please."

 

His father nods, "Of course, Jungkook. You can tell me anything."

 

Jungkook nods quickly, stopping his hands from shaking by clutching onto his knees.

 

"Well, uh, I..." He was really doing this. He was coming out to his dad. "Appa, I'm...gay."

 

He braces himself for a shocked gasp. Wide eyes and all the questions asking him things he didn't want to answer. Really? Since when? Are you sure? He didn't want to answer those types of questions. And more than that, he didn't want his father to reject him. Not so soon after finally getting to be acknowledged as his son.

 

"I know."

 

That's it. His father doesn't say anything else. He doesn't look shocked or disgusted or even like he didn't see it coming at all. He just looked confused as to why he was bringing this up.

 

"You know?" Jungkook's the one who's shocked now. "You--how? Since when?"

 

Now he was the one asking all of those questions he didn't want to answer. "I've known for a while, Jungkook and believe me I don't mind. You are who you are, and who you are is my son. I love you no matter who you love."

 

The relief that washes over Jungkook felt like popping out of the water after holding your breath for so long. It felt so good to tell the truth.

 

"I-I--...I don't know what to say..." Jungkook says truthfully. He lost his entire train of thought.

 

"Well, why don't you tell me why you felt the need to tell me you were gay. You've never done so before. I just thought it was an unspoken knowledge in this family by now," his father says.

 

Jungkook thinks about it. "Right. Uh, okay. Well, I told you because, well...I'm in a relationship. Or at least, I hope I'm still in a relationship."

 

His father doesn't look surprised at this either. Jungkook stares at him. "What? Don't tell me you knew about that too?"

 

His father shakes his head with a small smile, "I didn't know for sure but I was suspicious."

 

"Oh." Jungkook blinks quickly, looking down and away from his father.

 

"Is it that nice man?" his father asks, voice calm and reassuring. "Jung Hoseok-sshi?"

 

Jungkook groans, burying his hands in his face. "Was it that obvious?"

 

His father laughs, "It wasn't hard to tell that you had a crush on him. He's handsome and you stared at him with moonbeams in your eyes. You even personally asked for him to be your bodyguard when you've never cared at all about who was guarding you. I've talked with him on several occasions about you and he seems to care about you a great deal. That's more than I could ever say for anybody else."

 

Jungkook feels his cheeks heat up. "Oh."

 

Damn, they really were obvious. Was that how Taehyung and Jimin had found out? And Jin hyung? Since they were both so obviously into each other? The thought was enough to make Jungkook smile. But then he remembers why they aren't like that any more.

 

"Did something happen between you two?" his father looks cautious, like he wants to know but he's also unsure about how to handle it.

 

Jungkook doesn't know how to tell him about Junghyun. He was his father's son after all. Junghyun was just as much his son as Jungkook was.

 

"Well, Junghyun is...pressuring him to-to break it off. With me." Jungkook looks up at his father.

 

His father purses his lips, eyebrows furrowing deep. He doesn't look pleased at all.

 

"Is that so?" he says so slowly it was almost scary. 

 

"Yeah," Jungkook says. He know he can't tell his father about Junghyun's petty reasons for wanting Jungkook and Hoseok to break up, but he can explain just a little farther. "He thinks that our relationship will negatively effect you and our family."

 

"Is he threatening him?" his father asks bluntly. Jungkook flinches.

 

"His job. And to press charges." Jungkook hates how saying it all over again makes his stomach churn just as much as it had last night.

 

"He can't press charges," his father says, "Hoseok-sshi hasn't committed a crime but in regards to his job it is true that making unwanted advances on his protected charge could lead to instant termination. But there is no legal clauses banning him from a relationship with you if it's mutual. It's a bit unorthodox and it might effect his current position, but it's not illegal if it's mutual."

 

"It is," Junkook says instantly, "I'm the one who practically begged him to try this relationship out."

 

His father gives him a genuine smile. "I'm proud of you for pursuing what your heart tells you, regardless of what other people think."

 

Jungkook rubs his clammy palms on his pants. "Yeah, well. Look where it got me."

 

His father pats him on the shoulder, giving him a half hug. "Aigoo, son. Don't worry too much. Is this what you two fought over?"

 

Jungkook nods grimly.

 

"Then just talk to him," his father says, "Apologize to each other and don't worry about your brother too much. If you need me to, I can step in."

 

"Really?" Jungkook asks, "You would do that? For us?"

 

"For you," his father corrects him. "I think Hoseok-sshi is a kind person and I have a good feeling that he loves you and treats you well. That's all I need to know. Junghyun is being petty and putting his nose where it shouldn't be. He has no right to control your life. You are your own person."

 

"But...what about scandals? We're still on rocky ground publicly and--"

 

"That isn't something you should worry about. This is your private life. It's not for public knowledge." His father looks contemplative despite these words, but Jungkook doesn't prod any further.

 

Jungkook hugs his father again. "Thank you, Appa."

 

His father smiles and pets his hair. "Anytime, son."

 

******

 

Hoseok finally manages to drag himself out of the shower after what seemed like hours. He hadn't really been able to get out of bed for a long time earlier that day. His alarm had gone off and he had immediately knew he couldn't go into work that day.

 

All he did was lay around in bed and cry all day and he hated it. He absolutely hated that he had fucked up so badly with Jungkook. He ruined everything they had and he doubted Jungkook would ever forgive him. 

 

After so many hours his stomach began to hurt badly and he knew he had to get up to use the bathroom and eat. He scarfed down a roughly pulled together sandwich and drank some water but it was all tasteless.

 

He forces himself to take a shower, hoping that it would relax his muscles and calm him down a bit. It ends up working too well. He can't bring himself to get out now because he fears the second the water pressure on his skin goes away, he'll pass out. 

 

Nevertheless, he somehow manages to turn the knob to turn it off and gets out. His bathroom is steaming up so he walks to the door and opens it slightly to let some of the air out. The breeze feels nice and alleviates some of his lightheadedness. 

 

He stares at himself in the fogged mirror. His reflection is blurred and he swipes his hand over the cold glass to clear the image. He looked tired and beaten. He felt tired down to his bones. He wanted to go back and lie in his bed and sleep. Might as well make use of probably the only free day he'll have left before he has to go back and face the music at the Blue House.

 

By now, Jungkook probably doesn't want anything to do with him. He wondered if he would be transferred or if he would simply have to start looking for another job. Jesus, this had been why he had been hesitant to take this job in the first place. He didn't know for how long Jungkook would continue to want him. 

 

Falling in love with him hadn't been a part of the plan. He hadn't even seen it coming. Not at all. But alas, he did and there was no way he could take it back or change those feelings. He didn't know what to do with himself right now. Tomorrow was so foggy that he couldn't picture any possible outcome. This day trapped in his apartment was going to be his last day of semi-peace, and even still he felt like he was haunted by this dark feeling. It strapped him to his bed and told him that he shouldn't eat or drink or get up or shower. Shouldn't function like a normal human. 

 

He was lucky he had an opposing force in him that forced him not to give in to the feeling. The voice of reason, that was all he really had right now.

 

He goes and gets dressed and sits back down on his bed, grabbing his phone. He has two unread messages, one from Taehyung and one from Jimin. He reads Taehyung's first.

 

To: Hobi hyung

Hyung, are you coming in tomorrow? Let me know because some of us are trying to rearrange our schedules. Also, hyung...take care, okay? Maybe talk to Kookie?

 

Hoseok types out a quick reply to Taehyung, letting him know that he will in fact be there tomorrow. He doesn't write anything else about Jungkook in the message.

 

He then clicks to Jimin's message.

 

To: Hobi

Hyung...please talk to Jungkook. He's really upset and...hyung, he told me okay? What happened. He feels bad, I know it. He doesn't want to lose you just--

 

Hoseok exits out of his messaging app before reading he reads the rest of the message. He turns his phone off and throws his phone far away from him on the bed. He thinks about going back to sleep but it's a little bit too early. If he falls asleep right now he'll wake up again in the middle of the night and he won't be able to go back to sleep. He did not want to be awake in the middle of the night. It was dark and his thoughts tended to drift to the darker and scarier places of his mind. 

 

And he knew he would dream of Jungkook. He was trying his best to avoid thinking about the younger right now. The farther he put the boy from his mind, the less it hurt. But then every couple of minutes his focus would break and Jungkook would pop back into his head and sharp shooting pain would pierce his heart.

 

If he slept he knew that he wouldn't be able to escape thinking about him. Hoseok had been blessed and cursed with stupidly vivid dreams. And he usually remembered them. Dreams and nightmares alike. It was part of the reason he was afraid of the dark. He could often remember what he had dreamed to be hidden in those shadows.

 

So instead he takes his laptop out and tries to surf on the internet but everywhere he went he just saw more news stories about the President and Jungkook and Hoseok didn't want to think about him. He spends less than 15 minutes on the computer before he puts that away too. He lies on his bed and stares at his ceiling. 

 

He missed Jungkook. 

 

No, stop thinking about him.

 

Instead he thinks about his other interests. Like the modern ballet that was being hosted in the city that he really wanted to check out. He had got tickets for him and Jungkook but he didn't know if they were going to get to go now. 

 

Shit! Change train of thought. Don't think about Jungkook.

 

It was getting closer to Christmas. He was going to go back and visit his parents and sister in Gwangju. It would be really nice to see them. He had been hoping to take Jungkook along and introduce them--

 

Fuck!  Was every part of his life intertwined with Jungkook now? He couldn't think about any subject now without thinking of him and it was slowly driving Hoseok insane.

 

Somehow, against his better instincts, he ends up falling asleep in the early evening. He doesn't know when he knocked out but he knew that he had been trying so hard to focus on anything not Jungkook that eventually his eyes slid shut and he passed out.

 

It could've been minutes later or it could've been hours later but he wakes up with a gasp. He had a nightmare, and a pretty vivid one. He basically relived the fight they had last night but instead of Jungkook telling him to leave he'd turned into a huge monster and told him to go and die because he was a pathetic loser who didn't deserve him. He then chased him off a cliff and he fell to his death. Then he woke up and as much as Hoseok tried to shake the feeling, it lingered on past unconsciousness.

 

He got up slowly, careful so as not to make his head hurt. He glances over at the time. 10:30 pm. He groans. He had slept for 5 hours. He was not likely to fall back asleep that night. And to be frank, he didn't want to. Not if it meant having more dreams like that.

 

He gets up and drinks another glass of water. He swallows down a few painkillers since his head was throbbing anyway. That was yet another reason why he didn't like taking naps or sleeping early. He always got the worst headaches afterwards.

 

Soon enough, the pain slowly starts to fade and feels better. It was at times like these when he wished he had a TV. Something to do late at night when he couldn't sleep and he didn't want to think.

 

He's sitting there whining over the fact that he doesn't have a TV when he hears a crack of thunder. He jumps.

 

"Shit," he curses. He walks over to the window and pulls back his curtains. Sure enough, it's started raining. But it's not just sprinkling, suddenly it's pouring rain. Great, the last thing he needed was a lightening storm to jump scare the shit out of him while he didn't sleep.

 

Not even two seconds after he lets the curtains fall back into place, there's a loud series of knocks at his front door that scare the shit out of him. He nearly trips standing up, but he manages to right himself after letting out only a tiny terrified shriek.

 

Who the hell was at his door when it was almost 11 at night. He picks up his phone and turns it on. After a few seconds he sees something that stops him.

 

10 missed calls from Jeon Jungkook.

 

He barely has time to process this when the person at the door knocks harshly again. Hoseok startles only slightly before putting his phone down and going to answer the door.

 

He opens the door and his heart stops.

 

"What are you doing here?" Hoseok asks, breathless as he stares at Jungkook's drenched form. "And why are you all wet?"

 

Jungkook gives him a guilty look, hair wet and hanging in his eyes. "I was already half way here when I realized I didn't have an umbrella. It's really hard to sneak out of the Blue House at night and I really couldn't bring along anything but myself."

 

He was lucky that right outside of Hoseok's door there was a bit of an awning that kept the rain from continuing to drench him.

 

Jungkook takes a step closer and Hoseok takes a step back but he doesn't close the door. He allows Jungkook to take another step through his front door and then the door is closing behind him and Jungkook's dripping onto his tile walkway.

 

"I--" Jungkook starts, "I just--"

 

"Wait," Hoseok stops him and then goes to the other room. He comes back with an extra set of dry clothing. "Go change into clean clothing. Then...we can talk."

 

He didn't want Jungkook getting sick. The boy was here and Hoseok was having a hard time not believing this was a dream. It felt like one. He hadn't expected Jungkook to show up at his apartment. He hadn't expected Jungkook to reach out to him at all.

 

Jungkook goes rather quickly to the bathroom to change. He knows where everything is in Hoseok's apartment already since he's been here several times before already.

 

When he comes back out he looks much better and over his head is one of Hoseok's towels to dry his hair. He looks like he just came out of the shower and Hoseok doesn't allow himself to think any further with that train of thought. Nope. Nuh uh. Not right now.

 

Hoseok walks without speaking to the living room where he sits down on the couch. Jungkook follows him wordlessly and sits down on the couch too. On the opposite side. He clutches his hands together and Hoseok feels the tension in the air. 

 

"What did you want to talk about?"

 

Jungkook doesn't waste any time. "You don't really want to break up...do you?"

 

The vulnerability in his voice breaks Hoseok's heart. He sucks his bottom lip in and chews on it. He avoids Jungkook's eyes and stares holes into his pants. 

 

Hoseok doesn't answer right away and when he looks up at Jungkook, the boy has tears in his eyes already and he's looking at him like he couldn't bear to hear the answer he knew he was going to give.

 

"I'm sorry for the shit I said last night," Jungkook suddenly says, "I didn't mean it. I was just so mad and scared and I thought you were breaking up with me because of Junghyun and I just--I couldn't handle it because I l--"

 

His voice breaks off and Hoseok stares at him with wide eyes.

 

"I don't want to break up," Hoseok says with finality.

 

Jungkook's chest heaves as his breath catches in his throat. His voice sounds so small and hopeful when he asks, "You don't?"

 

Hoseok shakes his head, "I don't."

 

"But..." he continues, eyes downcast as he hears another roll of thunder that makes him flinch slightly, "I don't know what to do about Junghyun."

 

Jungkook shuffles closer to him, "You don't have to worry about him. None of this is illegal and I won't let him get you fired. If anything I have more sway than him now and I can protect you."

 

Hoseok groans, "But you shouldn't have to be protecting me, Jungkook, that's my job. And I've obviously failed at it."

 

He wants to reach up and touch Jungkook's face. He doesn't know if he should or if that would be crossing a line they hadn't gotten past yet. In the end, his hand creeps up and almost ghosts over Jungkook's skin. In the end, Jungkook is the deciding force who pushes his face back against his hand and leans into his touch.

 

Hoseok breathes out a shuddering sigh, "I don't want to hurt you."

 

"I don't want to hurt you either," Jungkook says quietly. His eyes trail down his face, studying every inch. They were so shiny despite the low lighting of the room. His hair was already starting to dry seeing as it was quite thick. "I..." he gulps, "I don't want to break up, hyung. I want to be with you. No matter who doesn't approve."

 

They were leaning into each other now, knees almost knocking. Hoseok's thumb rubs gently over his cheek. "What about everyone else? If a scandal breaks out or your dad finds out and--?"

 

"He already knows," Jungkook interrupts him. 

 

"What? He does?" Hoseok's mouth opens, "Did...did you tell him?"

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "No. He already knew."

 

"And he's okay with it?" Jungkook nods with his dreamy smile on his face. Hoseok was actually surprised. How in the hell did Jungkook's father know without anyone telling him? Did he maybe see them? The thought almost makes him cringe. And they were supposed to have been careful! Such a great job they did. First Taehyung, then Jin, and now even Jungkook's father!

 

"I..." Hoseok breathes, "So, he...?"

 

"He knows about Junghyun too," Jungkook tells him, "I didn't tell him everything, but he knows about what he's trying to do. He basically told me he'd take care of it."

 

"Take care of it how?" 

 

"Does it matter?" Jungkook asks, "Junghyun won't be a problem anymore if my father is involved. He's not the President for no reason."

 

Hoseok can do nothing but stare at Jungkook for the next few minutes. He felt such relief at this. 

 

"You really want to be with me?" Hoseok asks, "Enough to risk all of this?"

 

"Only if you want me too." They had gotten closer, being drawn together like magnets.

 

"I do." Hoseok was breathing practically against his lips now.

 

"Good." Jungkook whispers, "Because I'm never letting you go."

 

He closes the distance between them and the feel of Jungkook's lips on his sends a shot of liquid heat through him. The relief washes over him in waves and he pushes forward, nearly pushing Jungkook backwards with the force of their kiss.

 

His mouth opens for Jungkook immediately and Hoseok wastes no time in drinking him in fully. They fall backwards onto the couch with him on top of Jungkook and the younger wraps his arms and legs fully around him, like a koala. He hadn't been kidding when he said he was never going to let him go.

 

Hoseok kisses him with all of his apologies for letting this get out of hand. He kisses him with all he has. Like he was never going to let him go either. He kisses him like he loves him. His eyes open and he pulls back.

 

Jungkook chases his lips but when he opens his eyes and sees the look on Hoseok's face, he lets his head fall back on the couch.

 

Hoseok touches his face, both hands tracing his skin all over. His fingers ghost over his bow lips, top lip so thin and pink and bottom plumped with the pressure from their kisses. 

 

"You're so beautiful," Hoseok says as he tries his best to memorize Jungkook's face in his head. He wished he had a photographic memory so he would remember forever. "So so beautiful."

 

He leans down and kisses Jungkook's mouth once, "So beautiful." He kisses him again, "So..." and again, "fucking..." and once again so deeply that it felt endless, "beautiful."

 

Jungkook wraps his arms back around Hoseok's neck to stop him from pulling up again. He molds their lips together and presses into him. Their legs slide together, with Hoseok's knee in between Jungkook's hips. 

 

The kisses suddenly turn more passionate, hotter and Hoseok feels his heart beat quickening its pace. Jungkook's tongue caresses his in his mouth, and Hoseok shivers with the way his hands roam around his body. Jungkook hikes Hoseok's leg up and pushes their hips together. When he gives an experimental roll up, Hoseok lets out a surprised groan.

 

"Shit," he huffs out of breath as he pulls back from Jungkook, "Jungkook, w-what--?"

 

Jungkook kisses his neck and along his jaw. His hands squeeze his thighs tighter to him and he rolls his hips up again. The throb of pleasure that pulsates in his crotch makes him moan out loud.

 

"Fuck, Kookie, wait wait wait--"

 

Jungkook gives him only enough leeway to scoot up slightly to see him better. "Do you really want to do this...?"

 

Jungkook bites his lips, but the sly yet gentle look is still in his eye. "Only if you want to...?"

 

Hoseok searches his eyes for any bit of hesitation, but he finds none. He pushes back away from Jungkook and sits up.

 

"Hyung, what--?" Hoseok cuts off his anxious question with a wet kiss to his lips. He gets off of Jungkook entirely and grabs his hand, pulling him up. 

 

"Come with me," he walks the two of them over to his bed and Jungkook lets out an understanding 'oh'.

 

"If you want to back out, it's fine," Hoseok tells him.

 

"No! No, I-I want to," Jungkook says resolutely. They move over to Hoseok's bed and Jungkook stands there awkwardly for a good minute. Hoseok can't help but snort.

 

"Not so cocky now, are we?" 

 

"Shut up," Jungkook grumbles under his breath, "I'll show you cocky."

 

Hoseok raises an eyebrow, moving over to trail his hand down Jungkook's chest and resting it just above the his pant line. "Oh really?"

 

Jungkook smiles cheekily, "Definitely."

 

He dives back in and smashes his lips onto Hoseok's. He pushes him back until they're falling back over Hoseok's bed. They kiss heatedly and Hoseok scratches his hands down Jungkook's back. He pulls off Hoseok's shirt and while they split apart for a few seconds, Hoseok yanks off Jungkook's own shirt. Jungkook kisses down his neck down to his clavicle where he sucks it between his lips.

 

Hoseok moans at this and he feels Jungkook smile over his skin. Jungkook kisses all the way down his chest, lips sliding over his nipples and over his navel as he kisses everywhere on his stomach and chest.

 

"Jungkook," he moans. This time, Hoseok's the one to roll his hips up, feeling himself growing semi-hard in his pants. He pulls Jungkook's face back up to his and he kisses his swollen lips as he clutches his head in his hands. He hooks his legs around Jungkook's hips and then uses his weight to pull Jungkook down onto his back.

 

Now Hoseok is hovering above him. Their hips are fitted right on top of each other and he could feel Jungkook's hard heat through their clothes. He brings his hand down and cups him through his underwear.

 

Jungkook hisses, "Ahh, hyung, shit."

 

Hoseok chuckles slightly but just massages him slowly until he's almost completely hard. "Oh, god."

 

Jungkook looked so good under him, writhing and moaning. He sits up and moves over to his beside drawer. He pulls out a condom and lube, throwing it back on the bed towards Jungkook who stares at it with wide eyes.

 

Hoseok lowers himself back to Jungkook's mouth and pecks him again, once, twice and again. He smooths his hair back from his forehead.

 

"How do you want to do this, baby?" he kisses Jungkook's temple and his cheek and just under his ear. "Have you ever...?"

 

Jungkook nods, rushing out a "Yeah, I have."

 

Hoseok mutters, "Okay. Do you prefer top or bottom?"

 

"Uh...I--uh..." Jungkook stutters nervously. Hoseok jerks his head back and looks at him.

 

"You have had sex before right?"

 

Jungkook's face turns red, "Yes! I have, I just--well..."

 

"What?" Hoseok asks, running his finger through Jungkook's hair in a way he hoped was relaxing, "You can tell me."

 

"I had sex before..." Jungkook says, "It was just...with a girl."

 

Hoseok's jaw drops, "What? A girl? Wh...when?!"

 

Jungkook turns even redder, "It was just after Joohwan and I broke up. I was really upset and after that, the next time I was offered I just went with it."

 

"And it was a girl?"

 

"Yeah," Jungkook looks bashful and just a bit regretful. "It was awkward and horrible and I didn't like it all. Didn't even finish. At the time I was still questioning whether or not I was gay or just...bi and--Well, I'm gay. After that I knew for sure."

 

Hoseok tries to process this new information. "So you're telling me that you don't know whether or not you are a bottom or a top?"

 

Jungkook looks embarrassed. "What are you?"

 

"Well, I'm a switch," he tells him, "Usually with women, I'm the top obviously. With men, I usually top as well but I also I like to be the bottom, just cause you know--prostate. It's real nice."

 

Jungkook lets out a burst of laughter, "Yeah. I get it, hyung."

 

"But since this is your first time with a man," Hoseok runs a hand down his arm to hold his hand, "I can bottom so you don't have to worry about the pain."

 

"Pain?" he looked more nervous.

 

"Yeah," Hoseok nods, "Usually if you've never bottomed before there can be a bit of pain. Well, a lot actually. It takes some time to get used to. A lot of preparation."

 

"Oh..." Jungkook looks contemplative, considering his options.

 

"But if you want, you can still bottom. I don't mind helping you take the time to prep--"

 

"No! Uh, I mean," Jungkook bites his lip, "I think for this time maybe...you should bottom?"

 

"Yeah?"

 

"Yeah," Jungkook nods, "Yeah, at least until I'm more..."

 

Hoseok nods with a reassuring smile. "I know, baby. It's totally fine."

 

He kisses the younger boy in his arms gently, rubbing his arms and gently rocking into his lap. Jungkook gets into it rather quickly, pushing himself up farther into Hoseok's embrace. Hoseok reaches down and slides his fingers under Jungkook's waistband, pulling the pants down off his hips. Jungkook moans and pushes them both up onto their knees. He pushes blindly at Hoseok's waistband all the while keeping his lips locked with Hoseok's.

 

"Off, off," he whines and Hoseok is happy to oblige. He slides the pants off his legs and while he's there, he slides his underwear off too. Jungkook stares at him with eyes wide half with surprise and half with lust.

 

"God, you're sexy," he lets out lowly underneath his breath. Hoseok feels himself twitch with excitement.

 

"You too," Hoseok reaches up and pulls down Jungkook's black boxers that stuck close to his skin. His dick springs out and Hoseok's first reaction is to touch it. So he does. Jungkook's eye roll back in his head.

 

"Oh fuck, hyung, ah!" Jungkook moans out, "Feels so good."

 

Hoseok works his hand up and down Jungkook's length and resists the urge to touch himself at the same time. 

 

"Come here," Jungkook pulls him up so quickly that it takes Hoseok off guard. He attacks his lips with a renewed fire and Hoseok knew that this cocksure Jungkook had come out now. Sure he had a nervous side but once he got comfortable, he knew he was capable and never let anyone else forget it.

 

A wandering hand goes behind him to cup his ass and pushes him just the slight bit further to realign their hips. With the both of them like this, Jungkook rubs up against him and Hoseok lets the friction heat him up completely. Both of his hands are planted firmly on his ass now, grinding him forward against him, chest to chest. 

 

Hoseok's a moaning mess by this time and doesn't register his own hand coming up to enclose around them both, sliding up and down and rubbing his thumb over their heads and smearing their pre-cum together as he slides his hand back down. Jungkook whimpers against his lips and bites them, sucking and bruising.

 

"Hyung," Jungkook pants as he pulls away from Hoseok's lips with a wet smack, "I'm ready. I'm ready, can we--?"

 

"Yeah. Yes. Yeah," Hoseok looks around on the bed for the supplies he already got out. He finds the lube and places the condom by the side where the mattress wasn't dipping in yet.

 

He takes the lube in hand and snaps open the lid. He's about to pour some on his own finger when he stops. His eyes flicker to Jungkook and he gets an idea.

 

"Jungkookie, sit up against the headboard," he instructs. Jungkook's eyes snap up from his hands to his eyes. 

 

"What?"

 

"Slide up and sit with your back against the headboard," Hoseok says again. Jungkook listens this time, biceps shifting enticingly as he pushes himself backward until he's sitting with his back straight on the headboard.

 

Hoseok crawls up over him and Jungkook sucks in a breath of nervous air. "What are you doing?"

 

Hoseok grabs Jungkook's hand and folds it until one finger is up. He pours some of the cool liquid on there. "Teaching you how to prep me."

 

"Oh."

 

Hoseok positions himself so that he's straddling Jungkook's hips and hovering over Jungkook's lap with his legs spread open wide. Hoseok takes Jungkook's hand in his and guides it underneath him. 

 

He winces only slightly as he sinks down slowly onto Jungkook's finger, letting the pad push past his tight ring of muscle. Jungkook watches with a heated expression, clearly overwhelmed. Hoseok hadn't had sex in a while and it had been an even longer time since he had bottomed, but he still knew how to do it. He was rather good at it too.

 

He sinks down on Jungkook's finger inch by inch until he's fully seated. It's not that bad of stretch actually. It's actually rather pleasant being filled like such.

 

Jungkook on the other hand looked like he was about to come from this alone. The thought was almost enough to make Hoseok laugh if he wasn't busy sucking on the boy's neck and shoulder. He didn't give a fuck about hickies. He was happy to leave any marks he wanted. Jungkook was his and he didn't care who knew anymore.

 

Hoseok uses his powerful thigh power to lift himself up again and sink back down on Jungkook's finger. Jungkook curls it a bit to the side and Hoseok smiles, kissing his cheek in approval again. He learned fast. Hoseok poured more lube into Jungkook's free hand.

 

"Put more on your fingers and insert another--gently," Hoseok instructs. Jungkook complies quickly. Soon enough, Jungkook has eased two fingers inside him and Hoseok bounces up and down on his fingers slowly as Jungkook scissors him and stretches him open. He repeats the process--much more slowly as to not be painful--with a third finger and soon Hoseok's all out riding his fingers.

 

He jerks Jungkook in time with his bounces up and down on his fingers and he doesn't even care about the lewd moans escaping his lips. He shifts to grinding his hips forward so as to work his dick over Jungkook's skin. "Jungkook, oh god, Jungkook.

 

His fingers were long but not thick enough, and he pants into Jungkook's neck, "Jungkookie, fuck--need you. Need your--ah fuck fuck--in me. Now."

 

Hoseok pulls away from Jungkook and reaches for the condom he had put off to the side. He opens it with his teeth and Jungkook groans at the sight. Hoseok rolls it down Jungkook's length and then whispers into his lips.

 

"What position do you want?" he sucks and bites along his lips and then moves to lick along his neck. "Do you want me to ride you, Kookie?"

 

Jungkook shivers, grip on Hoseok's hip getting tighter. "Shit."

 

"Or do you want to fuck me?" Hoseok whispers hotly into his ear. A low growl in Jungkook's chest lets him know exactly what he wants to do. "Mmm...then do it. I'm all yours for the taking."

 

Jungkook flips the both of them over and hooks his hand under Hoseok's thighs and drags him forward and up. Hoseok's head hits the pillow and the wind gets knocked out of him but he lets out an exhilarated laugh and he licks his lips as Jungkook watches him like he wanted to eat him alive.

 

"God, I'm so in love with you," Jungkook whispers just loud enough that Hoseok barely hears. Despite the hot and heavy mood they had been in, Hoseok can't stop the gasp that gets caught in his throat and the sudden tears that spring to his eyes.

 

"What?" his voice cracks.

 

"I love y--" Jungkook doesn't get to finish as Hoseok pulls him down to him and kisses his lips so desperately before pulling off and burying his face into his shoulder. "I love you too, Kookie." He kisses his neck, "So fucking much."

 

Jungkook hugs him tightly to his chest, letting out a sigh of relief. "Let's stay together for a long long time, huh?" 

 

He looked so hopeful and Hoseok hated how much of a cry baby he was, touched by even the simplest words. "Yes, yes. For a long long long time."

 

Jungkook captures his lips in a long kiss and he forgets how long they get lost in each others lips. One of them ends up rolling their hips again, forgotten erection seeking friction and the both of them are reminded that they were quite busy before the love confessions came about.

 

Jungkook spreads his legs and Hoseok awaits the full feeling in his core. When it finally comes he throws his head back in a silent scream that comes out more like a breathy gasp. Jungkook is considerate, waiting for him to get situated without even needing to be instructed. He's decently large--much bigger than his fingers--so it take Hoseok a few minutes to get used to it but then he urges the younger along.

 

"Hyunnng," Jungkook whines as he rolls his hips experimentally, "You feel so good. Look so good. So tight. So sexy."

 

Hoseok giggles into Jungkook's skin. So he was the praising type in bed huh? Hoseok could get used to that. He bucks up to match Jungkook's thrusts. The younger holds him down and pushes in and out with a maddening rhythm.

 

"Mmm, faster!" Hoseok cries out as Jungkook drives his hips forward. He snaps in and Hoseok bites down onto Jungkook's shoulder. He licks it afterwards and presses loving kisses into it afterward.

 

He spreads his legs wider, pushing his hips up into Jungkook's as he turns his head to kiss him, tongue roaming and searching his mouth. As if searching for all the buttons to drive Hoseok crazy, Jungkook readjusts his position and slams in harder and ends up hitting his prostate.

 

"Yes, oh dear fuck, right there, Jungkook!" Hoseok nearly screams. Jungkook grins and thrusts in harder, pace faltering with the shear force. Hoseok squeezes Jungkook inside him, clenching as he locks Jungkook to him with his ankles around his hips.

 

"Fuck, shit, Hoseok I'm gonna--gonna--" Jungkook couldn't even speak anymore, his mind so muddled with pleasure.

 

"Me too," Hoseok's moans are no longer anything but harsh gasps for breath. "More, more Jungkookie, please, more, baby."

 

"Hnng, hyung, hyung," Jungkook grunts into his ears, "Cum for me. Cum for me, hyung."

 

It takes only a few more powerful thrusts aimed right to his prostate. That combined with the delicious friction of his dick against Jungkook's chest pressing tight into him has him cumming all over both of their chests.

 

Jungkook kisses him through his orgasm and is about to pull back when Hoseok locks him in tighter, a silent urge to keep going until he reaches his own release. Jungkook complies easily, fucking into him faster and a lot more sloppy than he had been. He was no longer focusing on finding Hoseok's prostate but just on reaching completion.

 

Hoseok watches Jungkook's face, erotic and determined, as he continues to fuck into him. Hoseok felt too good right now, everything felt beautiful to him. When Jungkook finally cums and Hoseok returns the favor by kissing him and through it, Jungkook's body convulses with pleasure and Hoseok finally unlocks his legs.

 

Jungkook pulls out and rolls off him. He takes the condom off and goes into the bathroom to throw it away in the trash. He comes back with a wet cloth. He must've already wiped the cum off his own stomach because it's gone and Jungkook only uses it to wipe Hoseok down. The cloth is warm and Hoseok grins at Jungkook, deliriously happy.

 

"I love you," he smiles, staring at Jungkook's adorable face. "You're so cute."

 

Jungkook laughs at him, "I love you too, Hobi."

 

"I think you have a hyung kink," he snickers. Jungkook slaps his thigh lightly.

 

"What bullshit are you spewing?"

 

"Don't try to deny it," Hoseok pulls Jungkook forward and wraps him up in his arms, "That was the most I've ever head you call me or anybody hyung at one time. You totally have hyung kink."

 

"Or maybe I have a you kink," Jungkook licks his shoulder like a puppy dog and raises his eyebrows suggestively at him.

 

Hoseok laughs loudly, "Oh my fucking god, letting you fuck me was the worst idea. Now I've given you so much material to embarrass me with."

 

"You love it, don't even lie," Jungkook smiles into Hoseok's shoulder where he was currently wrapped around him.

 

"Okay, fine I love it, but that doesn't give you a license to be cheesy or greasy."

 

"But those are my only two settings," Jungkook argues.

 

"Hmm, we'll see about that. I think I can find a few more buttons of yours to push," Hoseok muses as he gazes at him. Jungkook gives him a saucy look.

 

"You wanna bet?" he sticks his tongue into his cheek, poking the skin out suggestively. Hoseok watches him with his eyes hooded and dark.

 

"You're fucking on."

 

They lunge and attack each other with their mouths again, neither one of them ready to back down. In the end it didn't matter because no matter how their bet turned out, they were both winners.

 

Chapter Text

 

Hoseok was beginning to find that waking up could actually be a pleasant experience when he got to sleep with the younger boy in his arms. Jungkook was warm and so so solid. The solidity grounded him to the earth but at the same time allowed him safety of being able to float off peacefully, drifting between sweet dreams and consciousness.

 

Hoseok was asleep in his bed, chest bare as the back of his head rested on his pillow with his arms open. He felt Jungkook shift in his arms and he wasn't sure if the younger was waking up or not. Hoseok still felt asleep, mind just barely aware of what was going on around him seeing as his eyes were still closed and most of his senses were muted.

 

That was until he felt a soft wetness press against his chest. Jungkook had rolled over and positioned himself on top of Hoseok, but slightly lower so that his face was aligned with Hoseok's neck and chest rather than face to face. The raven haired man's mouth moved as the bare skin of Jungkook's chest touched Hoseok's. His mouth hovered over his skin, pressing the lightest kisses all along his neck and collarbones.

 

Hoseok let out a moan, his arms stretching above his head, "Jungkookieee~"

 

There was a breathy chuckle against his chest. "Morning," Jungkook continued to mouth at Hoseok's chest lazily. He moved slowly, kissing deeper and wetter with every inch he moved.

 

"Hobi," the breathless name came from Jungkook's pretty lips as he sucked lightly on Hoseok's skin, eliciting a groan from somewhere deep inside Hoseok. Jungkook kissed him again and again, hands moving all around, feeling along his arms and his sides. They moved along his legs, scooping under his butt to move along to his thighs, lifting one up to wrap around Jungkook's lower back.

 

Hoseok couldn't help but open his eyes and watch him. There was the slightest bit of light streaming in from the closed curtains and Hoseok stared openly at the glow on the younger's face. He was so bright, so warm as his lips continued to lightly kiss all the way down Hoseok's stomach and along his abdominals, whispering secrets all along the way.

 

Hoseok's hands found his way down to Jungkook's hair, slipping them alongside the back, feeling the sleek black strands. Jungkook's lips slide back up Hoseok's chest and past his neck until they reached right under Hoseok's ear, "Are you awake now?"

 

A tired giggle escapes from Hoseok's lips, "I am now, you tease."

 

Jungkook's chest rumbles against his with laughter in his ears. Jungkook continues to move so that his lips press into the underside of Hoseok's jaw. He makes little appreciative noises throughout.

 

"Jungkook," Hoseok sighs, hands roaming up and over Jungkook's bare back.

 

"Hmmm?" Jungkook hums against his skin, before he aligns his mouth with Hoseok's, slipping his mouth open. He sucks Hoseok's bottom lip in between his own for a moment before moving to kiss Hoseok's top lip and then both together. Hoseok's hands press harder into Jungkook's side, both of his legs coming to wrap around him as they kissed lazily.

 

Hoseok ignored the inquiry and instead focused on the sweetness of Jungkook's lips on his, despite both of their morning breath. Jungkook presses in harder, taking more of Hoseok's gasping breaths in before pulling away for a split second only to reattach at a different angle.

 

"I love you," Jungkook whispers ever so softly in between sweet kisses, "A lot."

 

Hoseok's heart continues to soar in his chest, flying away with any of his sense, "Didn't know you were so mushy," he chuckles, "I love you too, Kookie."

 

If anything the younger kisses him even deeper, the two of them getting lost in the feel of each others lips and their bodies as the sun rose steadily in the morning sky in the distance.

 

Jungkook pulls away to kiss his cheek and then back under his jaw, "I love so much, Hoseok, I love you." It was as if Jungkook just couldn't stop saying it. He had to keep saying it, forever and ever on repeat, until Hoseok finally understood him. He goes back to kissing Hoseok's swollen lips before he is even given a chance to respond. Hoseok rolls the both of them over, Jungkook now positioned underneath him.

 

The smacking of their lips becomes louder as the two of them dive in deeper, not even separating for a moment as their tongues swirl around each others and their fingers explore down each others bare bodies just like they had last night. Like they were searching for crevices to call home.

 

"Jungkook," Hoseok moans out just because he wants to hear his name, "Kookie, mmmm, Jungkookie..."

 

Jungkook pulls away, going back to tasting the skin of his neck and chest. Hoseok just closes his eyes and lets himself get lost in the feel of the younger's lips all over him. He doesn't even notice when Jungkook rolls them over again. Hoseok just lets Jungkook have his way with him. Anything he wanted, anything at all, it was his to take. He buries his hands in Jungkook's hair as the younger sucks on his stomach. When his lips swipe over his pelvic bone, heading inward, Hoseok's eyes snap open.

 

"Shit, Jungkookie, what are you doing?" Hoseok asks, breathlessly.

 

"Nothing," Jungkook murmurs, kissing deeper into the indented v like shape of his pelvic bone. He licks along the dip and then up again on the other side. "You taste good."

 

Hoseok dissolves into heated giggles, unable to stop them. They release part of the pressure inside his core and it helps him keep a level head. Kinda.

 

He grips the meat of his hips, fingers digging into the flesh of his ass as he presses open mouthed kisses along the crease between his lower stomach and his pelvis. 

 

"Jungkook, unngh, Jungkook-ahhhhhh," his voice cracks as he holds the last note. His grip in Jungkook's hair tightens when the boy licks lower, surpassing his dick entirely and just mouthing along his inner thighs, licking and tasting with curious taste buds. He knew he was hard again by now, it was just impossible not to be, not with Jungkook's moist breath all over him. Stirring places awake and to attention so much faster than Hoseok had ever experienced with anyone else.

 

Unable to keep his eyes closed anymore, he peaks open an eye to glance stealthily down at the man below. He knows he's caught as soon as he lets out the loudest choked moan that he's almost a bit ashamed of. It wasn't his fault though! Jungkook was right there in between his legs, looking up at him with the widest bright eyes Hoseok had ever seen in his life. As if he had been waiting for Hoseok to open his eyes and look at him, Jungkook had been watching him.

 

He was testing boundaries, like an untrained puppy and the eyes weren't helping at all. The image was a bit too much; too overstimulating. The sight of his erect dick standing tall right there next to Jungkook's face was one thing but as soon as they made eye contact, Jungkook leaned over, and pecked his length with the smallest lightest butterfly kiss. 

 

"Fuck, what are you doing to me?" Hoseok whined. Every thought in his head was like white noise, static in the background to the one name being chanted over and over again in his head, as if through a bullhorn. Jungkook smirks as his big eyes look back up to him for permission.

 

"Can I...?" the tail end of the question is unspoken but it was almost as if Jungkook had yelled it at the top of his lungs. Hoseok nods his head pathetically, the words choked up in his throat and the only sound coming out a shrill whine. With the affirmation, Jungkook doesn't really move right away. Instead, he eyes Hoseok with a determined look. The side of his pretty mouth quirks up and Hoseok would've slapped him for being so rude if he didn't already want his lips wrapped around him so badly.

 

The sun was hitting his face at all the right angles and the rainbows dancing on his skin erupt like fireworks in a soft sky. He leans down to press one kiss, and then a second and Hoseok trails his eyes along as he moves up. 

 

He knows he should be stopping him, telling him to get up and get ready for the day. It was going to be a long one, and Hoseok knew that they couldn't hide out in his apartment forever just exploring each others bodies. They had a life to get to. Both of them. Work and responsibilities and obligations. 

 

But for now, Hoseok's only responsibility was watching this beautiful man kiss his body. For this moment, he felt like he could spare the time to get lost in their own separate universe away from everyone else.

 

Jungkook trails his light lips along the sensitive skin of his length, eyes half open, hooded with interest. He peeks his tongue out gently, wetting him ever so slightly and the combination of cool air on the wetness makes Hoseok shiver. He continues to let his tongue slip out and taste ever so slightly. Hoseok breathes through his nose, not trusting his mouth to not cry out.

 

He moved so slowly--agonizingly so that Hoseok felt every part of his lips on him. The chapped outer skin, peeling slightly and scratching ever so lightly. It felt surprisingly good--just the slightest bit of irritation that actually contributed to the pleasure rather than put him off. The underside of his lips were stained pink as if he was wearing a bright shade of lip stain. 

 

His tongue peeks out and licks over him continuously, leaving trails of saliva and it sends sparks through him. Shivers down his spine.

 

"Oh god, oh god," Hoseok chants like a prayer.

 

"Nope, it's just me," Jungkook says with a muffled laugh.

 

"Shut up before I skewer you," Hoseok grunts out.

 

"Mmm, you'd like that wouldn't you?" Jungkook lifts his head and winks at him once again before he swipes his tongue alongside his head causing him to bite his lip and stop the harsh mewls from escaping his mouth.

 

He wraps his lips around his head and hollows his cheeks, sucking fully and lets his tongue slip around the slit. Through his sucked in cheeks, he slowly bobs his head down, inching further and further down with every bob. Hoseok's legs lock around Jungkook's back and his hands come up to massage Hoseok's shaking inner thighs. 

 

Hoseok watches as the ring of his lips widens ever so much the farther his lips get down his length. The heat of his mouth prickles along his dick, and Jungkook's tongue works along the large vein, tracing it. 

 

If Hoseok's head wasn't so far gone at that moment in time he would've been wondering just how far down Jungkook was going to sink his mouth onto him. He got his answer once he felt Jungkook's eyelashes blinking onto the skin of his lower stomach.

 

"Holy shit, Jungkook, haaa ahhh," Jungkook swallows around him (what the fuck did he not have a gag reflex or something?!) and Hoseok hisses. "Fuck, how'd you learn to do this? I thought you were a gay virgin until last night!"

 

Jungkook pops off, lips bright pink and glossy with spit as he narrows his eyes at him, "I hadn't fucked any dudes but that doesn't mean I haven't given head before."

 

Hoseok groans, lewd images popping into his head that make a low twinge of jealously blossom inside him, "You're ruining the moment."

 

"Lies," Jungkook bumps his nose against his dick.

 

"You did not just boop my dick," Hoseok strangles out with an exasperated laugh.

 

"I believe the correct term is an Eskimo kiss, get it right," Jungkook grumbles. 

 

"That's my dick, not my nose."

 

"Same difference."

 

"Are you saying you would suck my nose?"

 

"No, but I'd blow it."

 

"Oh my god," Hoseok unlocks his legs, "I was just about to cum but you had to use your mouth to speak and--"

 

Jungkook takes him back into his mouth so fast, it makes him choke on his words and he throws his head back in surprise.

 

"Shit, Kookie, give a man some warning!"

 

Jungkook doesn't answer, hollowing his cheeks and sinking deeper on him, using his free hand to massage his balls. He moves with determination now and Hoseok feels the familiar heat stir in his core, pulling tight.

 

Jungkook sits up slightly and grabs under Hoseok's hips to his lower back to hold him up. He uses his other hand to grab the base of his dick to hold it in place as he works his mouth over it, up and down. 

 

Hoseok whimpers, hands clenching in Jungkook's hair that only makes him groan deeply. The vibrations rattle around him and he feels himself getting closer.

 

"Shit, Jung--Jungkook, I'm g-gonna--"

 

He sinks down lower on his cock, and gulps three times around him and that's enough to have him coming with a cry. Jungkook doesn't remove his mouth, swallowing it all and making him have to lie down and close his eyes and rock slowly to recuperate.

 

"God, fuck, Kookie," Hoseok whimpers as he lets the aftershocks work through his system. Jungkook slides up his chest like a snake and presses wet, hot kisses to his neck.

 

"Did you like it?" he whispers with a soft smirk that he could feel without even having to see it with his eyes.

 

Hoseok shoves him off, "Yes, you little asshole!"

 

He gets up, throwing the blankets off him and making his way towards the bathroom. "I'm gonna shower."

 

Jungkook follows after him. 

 

Hoseok turns around. "What, you wanna join me?"

 

Jungkook shit-eating eager grin is enough to answer that question. Hoseok rolls his eyes. "Fine. But brush your teeth first!"

 

Hoseok starts the shower and lets it warm up while Jungkook brushes his teeth. They're both still naked and he tells Jungkook to get in first. He's going to brush his teeth right now too. "No more blowjobs this morning, alright? We've already brushed our teeth."

 

Jungkook gives a loud chuckle from the shower, "Whatever you say, hyung."

 

Hoseok pulls the curtain back and gets in. They do an awkward tangle in the shower to allow Hoseok a chance to soak under the water for a minute. Hoseok leans his head back and lets out an appreciative hum at the warm water sliding its way down his body.

 

Jungkook reaches out and touches his adams apple with his finger. Hoseok looks back at him. 

 

Jungkook smiles. "Hi."

 

 He laughs and flicks some water at him. "Hi yourself."

 

He reaches around Jungkook to the shampoo bottle behind him. He pours some into his hand and then grabs Jungkook's head. He massages the shampoo into his hair and Jungkook's eyes slide shut and he lets out a breath of content.

 

"Mmm, your fingers feel good."

 

Hoseok could use this opportunity to spout a sex joke, but he doesn't.

 

"I bet they'd feel even better inside me," Jungkook says anyway. Hoseok smacks his wet skin, hearing the smack echo with the bathroom acoustics.

 

"Such a pervert."

 

"You're no saint yourself," Jungkook argues.

 

"I never said I was, but I'm not here making innuendos every three seconds," he points out, changing position with Jungkook, so he could dunk the younger's head back underneath the stream of the shower.

 

"But your reaction is so funny," Jungkook tells him, bringing his head back up and then taking the shampoo bottle from his hand. He repeats the same actions Hoseok had done to him, scrubbing the shampoo into Hoseok's hair. The bubbles slide down his face and Jungkook scoops them up and tries in vain to stick them to his chin.

 

Deciding to multi-task, Hoseok grabs the body wash and starts on Jungkook's chest. "You just like seeing me squirm."

 

Jungkook smirks, "This is true."

 

"I knew it."

 

He rubs his hands over Jungkook's shoulders, rubbing the body wash into his wet skin. The water slides over his body and down his chest and in between his legs. They switch places again and Hoseok washes the shampoo out of his hair. He ends up getting a bit of soap in his eyes so he turns his back from Jungkook and faces the shower head. 

 

While the water stream pelts his face, he hears a snap from behind him. Jungkook had opened up the body wash and started rubbing over it Hoseok's back. His hands are warm and soft, slick with water and soap.

 

He feels Jungkook pull him back into his chest and hook his chin over his shoulder. His hands come up under Hoseok's arms and rub along his chest. He presses feather light kisses to Hoseok's neck.

 

"Your skin is so pretty," Jungkook whispers into the dip between his shoulder and neck. His nose nudges his ear when he nuzzles his head against Hoseok's. "Soft."

 

Hoseok laughs softly, "It's really not?"

 

Jungkook shakes his head. "Nope. I'm the skin expert right now and I say it's pretty. It's warm and tan and soft and luscious. So shut up."

 

He laughs harder, "Okay, damn." He's quiet for a few minutes, the only sound the water hitting the tiles of the shower. "You're not so bad yourself."

 

"I'm adorable."

 

"Shut up."

 

"And delicious."

 

"Shut up," Hoseok turns his head to the side and knocks Jungkook's away. It doesn't accomplish anything and just makes Jungkook giggle uncontrollably. Hoseok grips the back of his head, fingers in wet hair and pulls him forward. Their lips bubble against each others and Jungkook wraps his arms around Hoseok's hips, pulling them forward and against him. 

 

It's a slightly awkward kiss and anybody who could've been watching from the outside would only see a weird combination of squished noses and wandering tongues mixed with unruly giggles and scraping teeth. But they liked it well enough. It felt nice. Just being close with Jungkook and washing his skin and hair.

 

It almost felt like they were washing any sort of doubt they might've had lingering away. Everything seemed right again. Or rather, like they were finally becoming right after a long time where everything just felt wrong. Actually, perhaps 'wrong' wasn't the right word. They had just felt... inadequate. Incomplete.

 

Now, pressing sweet kisses to Jungkook's lips and chin and cheeks, Hoseok somehow felt like things had slotted into place. Where they were supposed to be. Like how Hoseok had been trying to feel since the beginning, but it was only coming together now. 

 

They finished up washing all the suds off their skin and Jungkook was the first to step out of the shower and grab a towel while Hoseok turned the shower off and cleaned up the area. When he stepped out, Jungkook wrapped a towel around his head, like a hat for the purpose of giving him long clothe hair rather than drying it.

 

Hoseok chuckles at his sweet smile and grabs the towel from his head and wraps it around his waist. He takes Jungkook's own towel and rubs it through his hair, just as he had done last night. Sometime in the middle of the night Hoseok had gotten up and started the laundry to wash Jungkook's wet clothes and they were probably sitting in the dryer now, all nice and clean. 

 

He went and retrieved them for Jungkook who was now sitting on the edge of his bed, smiling at him with an affection that just wouldn't dial down. Hoseok maybe would've felt self-conscious with the constant gaze following his every move like he was in the presence of a creepy painting, but that painting happened to be Jungkook and his eyes reminded him more of watching a sunset on a hard day rather than that of the supernatural.

 

If anything, his smiling face watching him made a tickle of flattery scratch in his chest and forced a smile onto his own face. It was impossible to resist smiling back when Jungkook looked at him so softly.

 

He hands him his clothes, "Here. Go put some clothes on."

 

"My naked body making your nervous?"

 

"Pretty sure all I want to do right now is punch you in the dick," he retorts, despite the fact that he was still gazing at Jungkook with literal hearts in his eyes. He even pats the top of his head like he would an adorable puppy.

 

"Mmhmm, right." Jungkook sucks his bottom in, looking up at him with hooded eyes. His hands rest low on Hoseok's hips, thumbs rubbing hot circles into his skin. He fiddled with the low hanging sweatpants he had on. He swipes his fingers slightly upward, the back of his nails scrapping over the naked skin just above his waist where he hadn't put a shirt on yet. Hoseok looks down at him, placing his hands on top of Jungkook's as the younger touches him.

 

Hoseok steps forward, standing in between Jungkook's spread legs. He brings his arms to wrap around Jungkook's shoulders.

 

"Don't get any ideas."

 

"I don't know what you are talking about, hyung." Jungkook gives him the most wicked fake innocent smile Hoseok's ever seen.

 

Hoseok knocks his head lightly with his knuckles. His other had massages into the flesh of his shoulder. "I believe you, Mr. Spreading Legs."

 

Jungkook tuts, "I don't quite think I've earned that nickname yet."

 

"Are you insinuating something?" he raises an eyebrow. This was not the first time Jungkook had hinted at this. Maybe he should see how far he could get Jungkook to go with the hinting.

 

"Maybe?" Smirk. Lip bite.

 

Hoseok narrows his eyes. He takes a step back and forces Jungkook's legs shut by stepping on either side of him. He then sits down on his lap, finally coming face to face and chest to chest with the younger.

 

He leans in as if going for a kiss. Jungkook moves in, obviously wanting what Hoseok was offering. At the last second, Hoseok grabs the back of his hair, holding him back right as their lips were centimeters apart.

 

He whispers, "You want to spread your legs for me, Kookie?"

 

Jungkook's eyes lock onto his lips and he gives a groan so low he almost couldn't hear it, but then looks him back in the eye. His answer was clear. Hoseok chuckles evilly, "Maybe next time."

 

He makes to pull back but Jungkook doesn't let him. He pulls him forward by his chin and crashes their lips together. Hoseok falls forward, letting himself get swept into Jungkook's current.

 

Hoseok can't help the laugh that escapes his mouth, but it makes Jungkook growl and he leans back over the bed, pulling Hoseok on top of him. Hoseok pulls away and bites his ear, "So eager."

 

"Shush."

 

"An eager puppy begging for me."

 

"I said shush!"

 

Hoseok nibbles on his ear more and then laughs as he pulls away. He leans down and kisses Jungkook's stupidly muscular chest, right above his heart once. "We don't have time for this."

 

He stands up and gets off the black haired insatiable man but Jungkook launches off the bed and lunges for him. Hoseok shrieks as arms close around his waist and swing him backward.

 

He fights his way out of the taller man's arms, both of them laughing all the way. Hoseok reaches over and smacks Jungkook right on the ass.

 

"Nice ass," he smirks.

 

"Who's the pervert now?" Jungkook winks back at him.

 

"Still you," Hoseok says as he marches around him to grab his clothes. "Seriously, get dressed."

 

"But you like my ass."

 

"I do, but--"

 

Jungkook grabs Hoseok's hand and brings it around so that it's massaging deep into the soft cheek of his ass. He bites his lips and leans in, speaking low.

 

"You sure you don't want to--"

 

"I'm sure!" Hoseok shoves Jungkook off, "I'm gonna have to put a muzzle on you, you're never gonna stop are you?"

 

"I could be into that," he says, pretending to be contemplative and thinking it over.

 

"You--"

 

Before either of them are given a chance to say anything else there's a sudden strong knock on Hoseok's door.

 

They stop, pulling away for a moment. "Who is that?" Jungkook asks.

 

"I don't know," Hoseok says, suddenly freaked, "I'm not expecting anyone."

 

"Yoongi hyung? Seokjin hyung?"

 

Hoseok shakes his head, moving to check his phone, "No, they would've texted before they came over if it was them."

 

"I gotta go answer the door, so sit your ass down for two seconds, would you?" Hoseok says with a playful smile as he walks to the door. He looks through the eyepiece.

 

There were dozens of men and women with cameras and microphones gathered around the front door, trying to look inside.

 

"Shit," Hoseok double checks the lock on the front door, sliding the second latch closed and darting back into his room.

 

"What's wrong?" Jungkook asks with worry, standing in the room already up and with underwear on. Hoseok didn't even have a chance to admire the younger's amazing body as he runs back.

 

"We have a problem. They're here! The press," Hoseok tells him, standing on the balls of his feet, ready to fight at any given second. "We gotta get you out of here."

 

Jungkook's jaw drops as he hisses, "What?! They're here? As in outside here? Outside your door?"

 

"Yes!" Hoseok hisses, "Keep your voice down! They're gonna hear us!"

 

"Why the fuck are the press here?!" There's a hint of rage mixed in with Jungkook's exasperation. They both knew there were only a few people who knew about them, and their friends would never tell anyone, which meant there was only one person who could've alerted the press. 

 

Hoseok knew he had to keep Jungkook from flipping out. It was going to be nothing but counterproductive. They needed to hurry up and get the fuck out of the apartment!

 

"How are we gonna get out of here?" Jungkook asks, reading his thoughts, "Do you have a back door? Or a fire escape?"

 

Hoseok jumps, "Oh yeah! The fire escape! We'll go through there!"

 

The both of them rapidly throw on presentable clothing that didn't look like they had been busy going at it last night and partially this morning. Hoseok internally groans. He knew after last night (and this morning, his thoughts keep reminding him) that there was no way he was ever going to be able to be rid of Jungkook ever again. Yet, the thought made him smile. Good. He didn't want to ever be rid of him.

 

He grabs his hand as they carefully try to make their way out of the apartment.

 

Hoseok lifts up the window. "Climb through. There's stairs leading down from here."

 

"Are you sure? It looks rusty and not up to code. When's the last time you used this?" Jungkook asks, eyes narrowed. Hoseok gives him a look.

 

"Which do you want: barely risk your life by going off the fire escape or commit social suicide by going out the front door? Your pick!"

 

Jungkook shuts right up and bends forward to step through the window onto the fire escape ledge. Hoseok smacks his ass on the way. The hiss and comment from Jungkook goes completely ignored. After Jungkook has gotten all the way out, Hoseok climbs out after him. He shuts his window behind them.

 

As soon as he turns around, he freezes.

 

Jungkook regards him seriously. "What? Hobi, what is it?"

 

Hoseok feels a cold sweat break out on the back of his neck. "We-We're really high up, huh?"

 

His voice wobbles as do his legs when he looks forward and sees the drastic drop from the top of the stairs to the ground. His hands grip the metal ledge.

 

"Hyung?" Jungkook's concerned voice comes. He takes a step forward and the shift of weight makes the entire landing shake.

 

"Woah, woah, woah! Don't move so suddenly! Fuck! Oh my god--" Hoseok backs himself up into the closed window, scrambling for the lock to unlock it and go back inside. His heart beats in his throat. "I changed my m-mind, Jungkookie, let's just deal with the press. They can't be that bad right?"

 

Jungkook comes up to him, and grabs his arms to stop them from shaking.

 

"Hyung, I know you don't like heights but this is the only way remember?" his voice is soothing but at the same time Hoseok knows that at any moment the fire escape could collapse and they would fall to their deaths. His hands were shaking badly.

 

"Kookie, I can't do this, Kookie," Hoseok repeats it an indiscernible amount of times to the point where he forgets how many times he actually says it. 

 

"Hyung, I've got you okay?" Jungkook pulls him forward slowly, drawing Hoseok towards him. "Look, okay, here's what we're gonna do: you walk backwards, okay?"

 

"Backwards?! Are you out of your fucking mind?!" Jungkook slaps a hand over his mouth to shut him up.

 

"Shhh!!" he says, "it's just like you said: barely risk your life by going off the fire escape or face the reporters."

 

Hoseok tries to get that through his head, but the world is starting to spin. He's pretty sure they're already catapulting towards the ground but just at an excruciatingly slow pace so as to prolong the terror and make the pain worse.

 

"Okay, okay! Backwards, okay," Hoseok staggers forward, eyes locked on Jungkook and refusing to move anywhere else. 

 

Jungkook slowly leads him forward, like he was a parent leading a toddler forward to teach them to walk. "Okay, so you walk down the steps backwards. I will lead you and be your eyes. and we'll go slowly. You won't ever look down this way. You'll be looking up at me the entire time. Okay? Think you can do that?"

 

Hoseok nods swiftly, probably causing a breeze strong enough for birds to fly along. 

 

"Okay," Jungkook guides him backwards and Hoseok stiffens when his foot starts to slip off into thin air. Jungkook's hands clutch onto his. "I won't let you fall, hyung! Just look up at me, okay? Look at me and step down slowly."

 

Hoseok does his best to follow Jungkook's directions. He keeps his vision solely locked on Jungkook, head angled upward. Jungkook holds his hands firmly and the pressure makes him feel slightly better as he slowly feels the steps out.

 

"Okay, we have three more steps left before we reach the next landing break," Jungkook informs him. "I'll lead you backwards and let you know when the next step is coming, okay?"

 

This was the worst trust fall game ever. Hoseok had always been terrible at those. Who the fuck just closes their eyes and trust falls backwards into the arms of someone they barely knew? Hoseok always failed. He kept his eyes open and just leaned back. 

 

Now, he was forced to put his entire trust in Jungkook. Not only did Hoseok fail to realize that leaving through the fire escape meant that he had to go somewhere really high, but he forgot that Jungkook already knew about his fear of heights. 

 

Hoseok trusted only few people in his life. He was friends with a great many many people, acquaintances with even more of them. But he only trusted a close few. 

 

He didn't even notice when Jungkook had almost made his way to the very top. His eyes were still watery and his jaw was clenched almost as hard as his hands in Jungkook's. But looking up into Jungkook's concentrated face, taking his job leading him down the stairs so seriously, Hoseok knew he was in good hands. Literally.

 

"Only one more flight, hyung," Jungkook tells him with a smile, "We're almost there!"

 

Hoseok chuckles nervously, "Still high enough to crack my head open?"

 

It's Jungkook's turn to give him a look. "I'm not answering that."

 

"Probably a good idea."

 

"And..." Jungkook laughs victoriously, "We're there!"

 

Hoseok takes on last step and the sole of his foot hits the pavement of the solid ground. He lets out a ragged sigh of relief. 

 

"Oh my god."

 

"You did it, hyung!" Jungkook squeezes his hand, reaching up and wiping part of the water that had slid down his face away. Hoseok realizes that Jungkook really hadn't let go of his hand once the entire way down. Something swells in Hoseok just then as Jungkook continues to obliviously cheers him on for cowardly facing his fear. "You did such a good job, hyung! See it was super easy, huh? I knew you could--"

 

Hoseok jolt forward and sweeps Jungkook up in a searing, thankful, rewarding kiss. Jungkook freezes in surprise but after a moment, melts into his lips with a flutter of his eyelids as they close. Jungkook barely grasps onto his upper arms when Hoseok pulls back with a satisfied smooching noise.

 

Jungkook gives him a dizzy, wistful stare with a goofy smile on his face as his eyes caress his entire frame like a whisper of a wish. "What was that for?"

 

Hoseok pats Jungkook's cheek and bites his lip, "I'll be sure to reward you later. But for now, we gotta get you back the Blue House."

 

Hoseok grabs his hand and turns to drag him away and Jungkook just lets himself be dragged with a happy ditzy grin on his face.

 

*******

 

If Jungkook thought they were going to be able to sneak back into the Blue House without being caught, they were dead wrong.

 

It's Namjoon, the director of the secret service, who finds them trying to get in stealthily through a random security checkpoint.

 

"Jungkook!" He regards him with an equally relieved and frustrated tone, "Where have you been!?  We've been searching for you everywhere! You didn't show up to the meeting this morning and Jimin couldn't find you and--"

 

He stops when he sees Hoseok standing there next to him.

 

Hoseok immediately steps forward, half pulling Jungkook behind him in order to shield him. "I apologize, Director. Jungkook and I had just come back from a morning stroll."

 

Namjoon narrows his eyes and looks between them. "Aren't you supposed to be on sick leave this week?"

 

Hoseok gives a strained laugh, "I was, but I got better unexpectedly today."

 

"You didn't clock in this morning. If you had we would've contacted you and confirmed Jungkook's location." Namjoon did not look pleased and Hoseok wasn't saying anything in rebuttal. Jungkook knew he had to say something or Hoseok was going to get his ass handed to him.

 

"I'm sorry, director," Jungkook steps forward. Hoseok tugs on his hand and gives him a wide eyed what the fuck are you doing? look. Jungkook ignores him. "I was impatient and I dragged him out before he could clock in. It was entirely my fault, director."

 

It doesn't add up. Jungkook knew that, Hoseok knew that and Namjoon 100% knew that. Really though, it wasn't about how good his excuse was. All that mattered was that it was coming from him. Namjoon couldn't really do anything to Hoseok when Jungkook was backing him, even if had broken protocol. 

 

Jungkook just couldn't let Hoseok get in trouble for something that wasn't his fault. It was Jungkook who snuck out and went to his apartment. It was him who didn't realize that staying the night probably wasn't the best idea and it was him who forced Hoseok to come back to work today in order to get him away from the press. 

 

Namjoon sighs, resigned, as he pinches the bridge of his nose and scrunches up his face. Jungkook fights off the triumphant smile. That was Namjoon's tell. He knew that they had won this battle. 

 

"Your father is expecting you," Namjoon says finally, "Your entire family is worried sick about you. I'm sure they'll know just how to properly deal with you."

 

Jungkook bows to him and Hoseok bows deeply again before Jungkook pulls him to his side. "Okay, then we'll be right on our way and--"

 

They scuttle off but not before Namjoon calls back at them, "And don't think I'm going to let either of you get away with something like this again. I'm watching you two!"

 

Hoseok and Jungkook give each other a weirded out look before they quickly walk as fast as they can away from Namjoon and the secret service headquarters.

 

If Jungkook thought that that was the only battle he would have to fight that day, he was wrong. Yet again. Jungkook was beginning to find that he was wrong about quite a lot of things.

 

As soon as they walked through the door to his dad's office, he was bombarded with yelling voices.

 

"Where in Heaven's name did you think you were doing?" his mother yells at him, "Do you have any idea the trouble you've gotten us into by pulling this little disappearing act?"

 

His brother was in the corner just looking at him with a smug smile and eyes delighted in his pain.

 

"I'm sorry," Jungkook bows low, "I didn't mean to scare anyone."

 

His father comes up to him and gives him a hug, "Don't you ever do that again, Jungkookie. You scared the hell out of me. I thought you might've run off." Jungkook doesn't miss the way his father's eyes flicker to Hoseok for less than a fraction of a second and then away.

 

"I'm sorry, Appa," Jungkook says sincerely. If there was one thing that he was actually sorry about in regards to the whole thing it was probably that he had worried his father. "I'll be sure to let someone know next time."

 

His father nods, "As long as you see to it that you do, then it's alright."

 

"No!" his mother interrupts, "No, it's not alright. We had to use up so many resources looking for you this morning. I don't know how it happened but somebody alerted the press and they thought we had a kidnapping on our hands."

 

Jungkook's jaw drops to the floor and Hoseok behind him draws in a shocked breath. His father's gaze lands on Hoseok for another short minute and then flickers back to Jungkook with a wordless assessment. 

 

"Yes, dear, but we've sorted this out," his father tells his wife, "They know it was just a misunderstanding and that all is well."

 

"But is it though?" his older brother speaks up for the first time. He walks over to his mother and father gathered around him and shows them the screen of his IPad where he presses play.

 

Jungkook's eyes widen as the video plays a short clip of the outside of Hoseok's apartment.

 

"Oh my good god," his mother says, aghast.

 

Jeon Jungkook almost causes national scare by sneaking out to see male lover?

 

He turns around slowly to look at Hoseok who he knows has read the headline. The older man's jaw dropped.

 

"Jeon Jungkook!" his mother's voice is sharp, "What is the meaning of this?! You snuck out to see somebody last night? Explain yourself this instant!"

 

Jungkook freezes. "I..."

 

His father reads the article underneath, "This is nonsense. It's just speculation. There's no proof. This could be anybody's house."

 

"We can't afford anymore scandals after all that's already happened," his mother huffs, clutching her forehead. She turns to Jungkook. "Did you or did you not sneak off somewhere last night?"

 

Jungkook claws at the inside of his palm. He was backed into a pretty huge corner and he knew there was no escaping it now.

 

"I...yes."

 

His father doesn't look all that surprised but his mother looks horrified. "You met with a man? Jungkook, if you tell me that you are a seeing a man, I swear on all that is holy--"

 

His father steps in, "We all need to just calm down about this. There's no reason to get so irrationally angry--"

 

"Are you hearing this, Kyungmin?" she yells, "Your son is telling you that he's been meeting with a man! Of all people! Your son is a--"

 

Jungkook flinches back when his father cuts her off with a stern voice, "I know exactly what he is and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it. Regardless of who he was seeing, there is no proof it was a lover at all."

 

"Why don't you ask him?" his older brother says, "He's standing right there. Why don't you ask him if he's been seeing a man and see what he says?"

 

His eyes Hoseok across the room and he gives a half snort.

 

His mother rounds on him, "Well then. Is it true?"

 

Jungkook was frozen solid. He had looked into Medusa's deadly stare and now he had turned to stone. All the hairs on the back of his neck stood on end and he was seized with the sudden bone-chilling fear that he was about to lose absolutely everything.

 

Before he even has a chance to say anything, someone barges into the room. Everyone in the room turns around, startled. They find it's one of his father's advisers and he's panting hard. 

 

"Turn--" he breathes heavily, hands on his knees, "Turn on the TV! Turn on the TV to KBS right now."

 

His father unlocks his arms from their place folded across his chest and hesitantly walks over to the table where the remote to the flat screen TV hanging on the wall is. He turns it on. 

 

Jungkook looks right into the face of the newscaster who signs his death sentence.

 

"Good evening. We've just received breaking news that our network has received exclusive footage concerning the whereabouts of President Jeon's son last night when he was believed by most to have been kidnapped. We take you now to the live playback." 

 

A video plays showing the same footage of the door to Hoseok's apartment but then as it pulls back, it zooms in on something else.

 

"Is that him?" a faceless voice on the footage whispers to himself. The figure was far away and there was a good chance that it was hard to recognize him from that far away. Still the resemblance drew attention.

 

Suddenly, the camera zooms into the image of two tall figures standing in the back alleyway of the apartment. The cameraman zooms in and then the video plays the footage of Jungkook holding Hoseok's hands and cheering for him for having getting all the way down the stairs without passing out. The camera captures the way his hand comes up and wipes away the moisture from Hoseok's cheeks and the way he smiles so fondly at him.

 

And the camera captures the way Hoseok steps forward and sweeps him up in a kiss. There's a gasp behind the camera and around the room as they all watch Jungkook melt into the lips pressed into his and kisses him back. The camera doesn't capture anything of what was said next but it captures the fond, flirty looks shared between both of them and trails after them as they run through the streets hand in hand on their way back to the Blue House.

 

"And there you have it folks. No one has an ID on who the other man is but that is without a doubt, President Jeon's son, Jungkook. What will this mean for the First Family? And what will it mean for the upcoming policy elections? Stay tuned for continued coverage. Let us know what you think about Jeon Jungkook's condition. And now back to Song Mina with the weather--"

 

The TV turns off and the room is deadly silent. 

 

Then everyone seems to turn to him and Hoseok at the same time. 

 

His mother is the first one to speak, her voice livid. "You dare to tell me you've been having an affair with your bodyguard?!"

 

The next person to speak, surprisingly enough, is Hoseok.

 

He steps forward and bows 90 degrees at the waist, "Mr. President, if you please, I will take full responsibility for this. You can fire me, but please don't blame Jungkook for this. He--"

 

Jungkook reacts instantly, grabbing his arm and pulling him up, much to Hoseok's shock, "No! That's not right. You shouldn't have to be take all the responsibility. I was just as much a part of it as you."

 

He turns to his father and bows, "I'm sorry for lying to you, father. But I'm not sorry for my relationship."

 

His father's wife scoffs, "Are you serious? You've gone and got yourselves caught on camera! Do you have any idea what you've done! There is no way you will be leaving the house from now on."

 

His brother smirks when she turns to Hoseok, "And you! How disgusting! You are most certainly fired and we will wholeheartedly be persecuting--"

 

Jungkook has had fucking enough of this. "You can't fire him. He's done nothing wrong!"

 

"Nothing wrong?" she looked appalled, "You think that was nothing wrong?"

 

"Unless you want me going straight to the media and telling them everything, then you won't fire him--"

 

"What kind of weak attempt at blackmail is that?" his brother mutters. Jungkook whips around and looks at him. 

 

"Well, so much for you wanting to keep what I am a secret. Now the entire world knows you have a gay brother. Are you happy with what you've done?"

 

His brother fumes and his mother looks furiously between them. "Junghyun! Please tell me you weren't the one who set the press out after them!"

 

His brother looked angry but he didn't deny it.

 

"Oh for the love of God, is everyone in this family a moron?" she screams, "At least if this hadn't gotten out we could've denied it completely but you went and got every news station in the country banging down our door to know if Jungkook's a faggot--"

 

Jungkook flinches hard, her words like barbed wire wrapping around his throat and cutting into his skin. His father finally steps in.

 

"That's enough! All of you!" his voice is booming and everyone in the room freezes. "There is absolutely no reason for this to be happening."

 

"Honey, he's--"

 

"I know!" His father says, "I know and it doesn't change anything. Yes, it was unethical and highly inappropriate for him to have a relationship with his bodyguard but there isn't anything we can do to change that."

 

"But--"

 

"No. I'm not going to crucify him for this," his father turns back to Jungkook who had been bled dry of all his will to argue against. "I'm sorry this is happening but we must do something. What would you suggest?"

 

"I--" his voice gets stuck in his throat. His mind was whirling. He had absolutely no idea what to do.

 

"This man has broken the rules of his contract," his father's wife says again, "His employment must be terminated immediately. This is not a matter of what we want but what it is the law to do. We cannot have a bodyguard on staff who is involved with his protectee."

 

"I understand that," his father says, "but surely instead of firing him we could just have him demoted to another position in the secret service and--"

 

Hoseok steps forward and announces loudly, "I resign."

 

Jungkook's heart stops. He grabs Hoseok's hand, not even caring that his entire family was watching him. "What? Hyung, no! You can't--"

 

"I cannot, in good conscious, stay employed here knowing that I've abused my position as your protector. I must take responsibility for the professional infractions I've made by resigning. I do not apologize for my feelings for Jungkook nor do I apologize for our relationship. However, I humbly apologize for my inappropriate conduct. Please accept my resignation."

 

The entire room is quiet. Nobody makes a sound except for Jungkook who was fighting off frustrated tears because No! This wasn't supposed to happen! 

 

His father makes a soft sound but then nods. "If that is what you feel you must do.  You can file your resignation with Kim Namjoon's office and I'll have him set up a severance package. Even despite all of this, you've been a good bodyguard to Jungkook."

 

His mother looks like she wants to argue but she doesn't. His brother was still fuming. Jungkook was just trying catch his breath.

 

"You may take the rest of the day to collect your things and get everything sorted."

 

Jungkook stares in dumbstruck silence. His head still wasn't wrapping around anything at all.

 

What even just happened? Time wasn't moving as if locked in place and the only thing moving was Hoseok as he bowed and gathered his things. He looks him in the eyes, a moment Jungkook barely notices, and then turns to leave.

 

As soon as the door closes with a jarring thud, the room speeds up back to 100%, almost like someone had pressed the fast forward button on a remote and Jungkook had missed everything that everyone else had just said.

 

"Jungkook-ah?" his father's voice sounds from behind him, making him flinch at the sudden sound. He turns and sees the concerned look on his father's face. 

 

"Are you okay?"

 

Was he okay? All he could think about was that he was here, and Hoseok wasn't. He had walked out of the room--he quit--and he was gone.

 

That didn't mean he was walking out of Jungkook's life. It couldn't mean that. He was almost entirely certain it didn't mean that. It was just a job. 

 

But it was the only thing tying Jungkook to Hoseok. The only way he could see him day by day. This wasn't the end. It couldn't be the end. He refused to let this be the end.

 

He'd spent his entire fucking life letting his family make the decisions for him. Letting them control who he was, what he did, and who he would become. He couldn't stand it any longer. He thought he'd finally been able to break free of their chains but he had been wrong. He still had one last thing to do.  

 

He was fucking done with this. Done with everything.

 

He whips around and stares at his father's wife and his brother.

 

"I hope you're happy."

 

"Excuse me?" she blinks at him, face puckered like a raw fish. "Don't you take that tone with me!"

 

"I'm leaving," Jungkook turns around and starts to walk out of the room. As if he had said the magic words, everyone in the room reacts. 

 

His father comes forward, "Wait, Jungkook--"

 

"You're not going anywhere. We still need to discuss what you've done and how to fix it--"

 

"Let him go," his brother seethes, "He's already ruined enough for this family. Let's see how long you last in office after this--"

 

Jungkook stops. So do the rest of them. As if sensing that something was extremely off just by the way his shoulders were shaking.

 

He turns around and glares at the woman he had grown up believing to be his mother and the brother who never truly loved him like he was own flesh and blood. 

 

"You two think you've got everything figured out, well guess what? I have news for you: you would be no one, you would be nowhere if it wasn't for my father. He's done so much for us and this country and yet you two act like you were the ones who did something other than sit on your asses in meetings and bitch about what other people are doing wrong."

 

"You're one to talk," his brother stands up, walking towards him with his jaw clenched and his hands balled in angry fists, "You've done the least of all of us and yet here you are on your high and mighty chair trying to blame the rest of us for problems that no one but you have been causing!"

 

"I said, that's enough, both of you!" his father snap. Jungkook's eyes catch the absolutely done look on his father's face and he's knows exactly what's coming. "We are done talking about this. All of us."

 

"But--" his father cuts his wife off.

 

"No. Jungkook go back to your room. Jihye, Junghyun, find something else to occupy your time with. This issue is closed and done."

 

"But what about the press? We still haven't figured out how we'll--"

 

His father cuts his wife off again, "That is none of your concern. Or yours." He looks at his brother. "I will think about it and discuss it with Jungkook before we make a move."

 

"But we're wasting time--"

 

"We will not talk about this any further. Is that clear?"

 

"Yes. But--"

 

"Are. we. clear?" his father's voice was acid and no one dared disobey. Junghyun leaves the office first, face set in a permanent scowl. His father's wife doesn't look at all pleased and she sends a glare his way but Jungkook's long since learned to phase any animosity she might have towards him out. 

 

Jungkook is the last one to leave. His father doesn't say a word to him. Somehow, Jungkook knows that his father will probably come to talk to him later but for now, they all just needed to be alone. Needed to cool off. Gain some perspective.

 

Jungkook supposed he should go to his room, but his radar was focused elsewhere. He navigates his way to the secret service headquarters. Along the way, he spots Jimin and Taehyung who were coming out from the locker rooms.

 

"Hyungs!" Jungkook calls out in a huff, having missed some opportunities to breathe what with all the running he just did. "Have you seen Hoseok?"

 

Taehyung and Jimin exchange looks before Taehyung speaks up, "He went to speak with Namjoon. Jungkook...what happened?"

 

"I fucked up," Jungkook crumbles, the pain in his chest now hitting full force with the gravity of what's just happened, "I got him fired and now--"

 

"Fired?" Jimin repeats, confused, "He said he quit."

 

"Well, yes, technically, but it's all my fault that he was about to get fired but quit instead--"

 

"Jungkook," Taehyung puts his hand on his shoulder, giving him a look of poignant resignation, "Maybe this is for the best."

 

"What? Hyung!" Jungkook takes a step back, looking back and forth between them. "What are you saying? How can it be the best thing if he's not here with me?"

 

Jimin looks at him, studying his face as if seeing how truly young Jungkook still was and gives him a little shrug, "Jungkook, I know it might be hard to see right now, but this might actually be a blessing in disguise."

 

"I--"

 

"Your father won't be President forever, Kookie," Taehyung says, face strong and matter-of-fact, "Like you've said so many times, you aren't a crown prince. You don't have a kingdom to inherit. You aren't a chaebol; you don't even have a business to take over. Nothing."

 

"I--" Jungkook stops, swallowing around nothing, "I don't--"

 

"Take it from someone who rarely sees his boyfriend because of his job," Jimin says, a hint of regret lacing his tone, "When you are a free man, and your dad is no longer the man making all the big decisions for the entire country, you're going to want something more than this life of nonsense politics."

 

"But Hoseok wanted this job so bad. He worked his ass off for it."

 

Jimin shrugs again, "I think you'd be surprised by how much Hoseok doesn't actually care about the job itself. "

 

When Jungkook finally processes what Jimin meant by that, his face starts to burn.

 

Taehyung gives a light chuckle, "Aw, look at little Jungkookie. Blushing because his boyfriend only wanted to keep his job to be near him."

 

Jimin smiles, "Think about it, Kookie. In no time, you'll both be free of this. I've known you for years now and I know that you don't really want a life of politics. You only took on all of this because of some backwards way you thought you could prove your worth to your family."

 

"You never needed to prove yourself to anyone, my Jungkookie. My baby bro, my lil dumb bunny," Taehyung messes with his hair, looking at him with the fond gaze that an actual brother would, "You are enough. You've always been."

 

Jungkook didn't know why his chest felt heavy but he suddenly felt the urge to hug his hyungs. 

 

"Aww, Jungkookie, don't cry!" Jimin ends up being the one to wrap him up in a hug. Taehyung was quick to follow for a massive uncomfortable group hug.

 

"Shut up, I'm not crying," he sniffs. His hyungs hug him tighter. His arms may or may not have contracted in an inward motion that just so happened to press both Jimin and Taehyung's bodies closer to his own. Nope. Must've been an involuntary muscle spasm.

 

Taehyung actually kisses his hair like a four year old and that's what finally makes Jungkook pull back with disgust. "Ugh! Hyung!"

 

Taehyung just giggles and pinches his cheek. "So cute."

 

Jungkook lets him get away with it. Whatever. He was family. Annoying, but family.

 

Jimin leaves him with a loving pat on his cheek that makes Jungkook feel warm and fuzzy, and then Jungkook is allowed to go on his way to find Hoseok. He walks through the office, looking around and seeing that Hoseok wasn't in there anymore. He must've gone somewhere else. 

 

He goes back towards the locker rooms and debates going in to check. He figures why the fuck not. He had nothing to lose anymore. 

 

As soon as he opens the door, he's met with the very person he was looking for.

 

"Hoseok," Jungkook blurts accidentally, like an involuntary reflex.

 

They stop, staring at each other for an abnormally long amount of time. Hoseok is the one to break the silence.

 

"What? No 'hyung' this time?" he looks down, a grimace on his face, "I've already lost your respect that fast, huh?"

 

"I'm not mad," Jungkook ends up blurting again. He actually hadn't known that fact until he said it, but he knew deep inside that it was true.

 

Hoseok looks surprised. "You...aren't?"

 

Jungkook shakes his head. He forces his brain to slow down this time, thinking before speaking. He says, "I was...upset. I kinda went off on them--"

 

"On your parents?" he asks, with eyes wide with shock.

 

Jungkook shakes his head. "No, just my mother and Junghyun. It's a long story. Hyung, actually--...can we...can we talk? In my room? Before you go home?"

 

Hoseok heaves the box in his hands and that's when Jungkook realizes that Hoseok had changed out of his uniform and was now in a regular shirt and casual slacks. He realizes that he's never actually seen Hoseok dressed casually in the Blue House before. It was really happening now. It was final.

 

Hoseok wasn't his bodyguard anymore.

 

"Yeah, let's go to your room." Hoseok gestures forward and Jungkook turns to walk back down the path to his room. Hoseok follows silently beside him. 

 

Jungkook steals glances at him every few seconds. Every time Hoseok seemed to be looking down, avoiding his gaze.

 

When they get back to his room, he takes Hoseok's box from his hands and sets it down on the table in front of his couch. He then moves to sit on it, and Hoseok sits down on the other side of him.

 

Before he even has a chance to say anything, Hoseok beats him to it, "I'm really sorry, Jungkook."

 

Jungkook looks at him closely, studying his face. His mouth was drawn down in that way it always did whenever he was really upset about something. Jungkook wanted to kiss it away, but he knew that now might not be the best of times. Later, he promised himself, he would be sure to kiss his sorrows away later. But for now...

 

"You don't have to be sorry, hyung," Jungkook says, scooting closer to him and pressing his palm into his thigh.

 

"No, Kookie, I did something rash without even talking to you about it," Hoseok starts speaking quickly, a whole garbled mess of words and emotions, "It's my fault we even got caught in the first place. I was the one who kissed you right there in broad daylight and got us caught by the press and I'm the reason that all of this is going down now and you fought with your family and I've probably ruined everything for the President and I just did what I did because I didn't know what else to do and--. I just. Everything was telling me that no matter what I did, something bad was going to happen and then I suddenly saw my life without you or having to hide my relationship with you for the rest of my life and it scared me so much that those words just fucking slipped out and there's nothing I can do to take them back now and I'm just so sor--"

 

Jungkook leans forward and cups Hoseok's cheeks between his palms and pulls him forward. He throws his previous resolve to wait till later to kiss Hoseok to the wind. He presses his mouth to Hoseok's and watches as his hyung visibly loosens and leans into him, arms coming up to wrap around his waist and hug him tight to his chest. Jungkook rubs his thumbs over Hoseok's cheekbones and presses warm, understanding, deep kisses into his lips, hoping that whatever he was doing it was helping to calm the elder down.

 

Hoseok sighs into his mouth and Jungkook pulls away slightly, pressing one last smooch to his lips before leaning back for real. With his hands still caressing Hoseok's face, he licks his lips and stares Hoseok directly in the eyes. 

 

"I understand why you did what you did," he says quietly, "I didn't at first, but--well, I get it now. Whatever it was we had going...we couldn't keep it up forever. Not when I am who I am and you are what you are."

 

"Did I make a mistake?" Hoseok asks so brokenly, eyes searching his for any sense of disapproval. Of hurt.

 

Jungkook shakes his head, giving Hoseok another little reassuring peck to his pink pouting lips. Gone. He wanted the frown gone

 

"We're not going to be here forever," he says calmly. It all made sense to him now. What Jimin and Taehyung had been trying to tell him. What he should've known for a long time. "This won't always be my room. The Blue House won't always be my house and I won't always be the President's son. Soon enough, I'm just gonna be my dad's son. I'm gonna be just...Jungkook."

 

He runs his eyes along Hoseok face, taking in every inch and smiling knowing that this sight wasn't going anywhere. "At the end of the day, we're just us. You and me. Hoseok and Jungkook. And...I love you."

 

Hoseok gives a low whimper in his chest. Jungkook has to force himself to ignore it for now, despite how badly he wanted to kiss Hoseok again.

 

"I love you and I'm in love with you and I don't care who we are or what we are as long as we're together," he says, nodding at his own words, "Maybe this is better for everyone."

 

Hoseok seems to lose all the strength in his body and he collapses forward, his entire body sinking into Jungkook's chest. His arms wrap around his waist and his face presses into his neck. Jungkook wraps his arms around Hoseok's shoulders and presses him closer. It was never close enough.

 

"God, this is so messed up," he sighs into his chest, snuggling closer to him.

 

"We'll figure it out," Jungkook murmurs back. He leans back so that he's lying down on the couch, with his head cradled on the armrest pillow. He kicks his legs up so that both his and Hoseok's legs are tangled together and resting on the other half of the couch. Hoseok was now lying down fully on top of him.

 

He takes in a large breath and watches as Hoseok's head slowly rises and falls with the rise of his chest. With his arm still wrapped around his waist, he brings a hand up and starts stroking Hoseok's hair.

 

"Hmmmm noooo," he whines softly, "You're going to put me to sleep."

 

"Good." Jungkook smiles as he presses his face into the top of Hoseok's head. He could smell the faint fragrance of coconut from here. It smelled good. Calming. He liked how Hoseok smelled a lot. He continues to stroke Hoseok's hair lightly.

 

Hoseok snuggles into his chest deeper, squeezing him tighter around the waist. He's pretty sure by now that Hoseok is starting to drift off into sleep. His chest speed was slowing and his warm puffs of air against his neck were evening out. 

 

His speech his slurred when he asks, "Is this a dream? Are you really here with me? For real?"

 

Jungkook chuckles and tries his best not to jostle Hoseok too much. Truth was, everything Hoseok did made him laugh. Everything he did made him smile. He didn't see why he should have to give that up for anything. 

 

"For real," Jungkook whispers to him when he finally calms down, "For as long as you want."

 

"Mmm really?" he murmurs from the side of his mouth that was not pressed against Jungkook's chest, "Even if I said forever?"

 

Another sparkling grin breaks out over his face. He just couldn't control himself. Despite the fact that his life was literally falling to shit right in front of his eyes, he didn't actually feel upset. He felt good, for the first time in a while. Free.

 

Hoseok was here with him and there was nothing holding them back from each other now. Not his family, not the press, not even their society, widespread homophobia be damned. He was thankful just for the privilege of being able to lay here, safe and comfortable with the man he loved. 

 

He closes his eyes, feeling Hoseok's heartbeat steadily though his chest.

 

"I'd say you were cheesy," Jungkook says as he close his eyes, "But thank goodness I'm not lactose intolerant, because you're my favorite kind of cheese."

 

Hoseok giggles against his chest, those tired kinds of giggles where your eyes are closed and you feel so calm but you can't do anything to stop the laughter from escaping. The kind that takes over your whole chest but leaves behind the best kind of feeling, relaxed and dreamy and infinitely content. Euphoric.

 

They both giggled themselves to sleep. It was the best, most refreshing and cleansing nap that Jungkook had ever had in his life.

 

********

 

Jungkook wakes up only when he hears the shutter of a camera. His eyes snap open and in his disorientation he momentarily thinks that the press somehow got into his room and were talking pictures of him and Hoseok. 

 

He jerks forward, waking up Hoseok who had previously still been passed out against him. 

 

"Sorry, sorry!" the voice of a grown man comes.

 

Jungkook squints at his father, "Dad, what the hell?"

 

His father bristles nervously, "Sorry! You two just looked too cute cuddled up like that and I just had to take a picture. I'm sorry, I'll delete it if you want me too."

 

Hoseok clutches his head in his hands. He groans as he sits up, "What is going on?"

 

He seems to finally noticed Jungkook's father standing there and he stiffens, sitting up straight instantly and hurrying to stand up and bow to his father.

 

"Mr. President, I'm sorry, I--"

 

His father steps forward, "Now now, none of that. I'm not here as the President, I'm here as Jungkook's father."

 

Hoseok's cheeks burn brilliant red. "In a way, that kind of makes it worse. I was just sleeping on your son."

 

"Well, I didn't walk in on anything frisky so I think my eyes and my innocence have been spared."

 

"Dad!" Jungkook pulls Hoseok down to sit next to him again and his dad laughs at him. Hoseok avoids everyone's eyes.

 

"Well, I guess I actually have to take that back, I am here as the President too," his dad takes a seat on the chair across from the couch. He sobers up a bit, "However unpleasant it is, we still need to discuss the situation with the press."

 

Jungkook looks outside towards his window. It was dark. He groans, "How long have we been asleep?"

 

Hoseok reaches forward and checks the time on his phone. "Almost 6 hours."

 

Jungkook smacks his lips together. "Wonderful. This is why I don't take naps."

 

"But you looked so cozy!" his dad points out. Jungkook gives him a look. His father gives him an oopsies smile and pretends to zip his lips. Hoseok sits between them, looking awkward but oddly cute with his mused hair and drooping eyelids with fatigue left over from being shocked out of their nap.

 

Jungkook motions for his father to talk, because it was likely that neither of them were going to start the conversation. 

 

"Well," his father starts, "as you both know we have to deal with the press."

 

They both nod, faces grave.

 

"What are you suggesting we do?" Jungkook asks quietly, not having a single clue what they should do. "I know what standard protocol is but I don't want to deceive anyone anymore. Especially not about this."

 

He reaches out and grabs Hoseok's hand in his. Hoseok is quiet but his gaze is fixed solely on Jungkook as the younger picks up his hand and threads their fingers together, locking them in place. He knows what this looks like, what it means. They were a solid unit from here on out. Nothing was going to convince him otherwise.

 

His father eyed their conjoined hand. He feels Hoseok stiffen, his face turning into a frown. They both waited for his father to speak.

 

"I don't think we should hide this from the media," his father states. The tension whooshes out of the room like air from a balloon. Both of them stifle their shock but they turn to stare at the man.

 

An incredulous "What?" slips out of Hoseok's mouth before he could think to stop himself.

 

Jungkook just stares with his mouth wide.

 

"I'm saying that there's no reason to hide it from the media," his father continues, "If we go about our usual tactic of denying everything, it won't matter, because there's video evidence. Sure we could have it blocked everywhere but the whole entire nation has already seen it. There's not much we can do other than apologize."

 

Hoseok's eyes flicker to his.

 

"But," his father says, "I don't think we should do that either."

 

"What?" Jungkook asks, completely at a loss, "So you're saying that we should neither deny nor apologize for this?"

 

He nods, "Exactly."

 

"I'm sorry but I don't understand," Hoseok says, looking towards Jungkook's father, "Are we just supposed to ignore it altogether? Is that even going to be possible?"

 

"Surely not, with the media even trying to break down your door," Jungkook says.

 

His father says, "We aren't going to ignore it, no. You're right that the press are not just going to let this slide, which is why in a few days time we will have another press conference."

 

Jungkook groans.

 

"There is something I have been discussing with my advisers for a long time now but have been keeping extremely quiet," his father says. Jungkook looks up. 

 

"What do you mean?"

 

"I mean that we were talking about a new policy we were hoping to slowly introduce over the next couple of years, but it seems now that in light of recent things, we might have found the perfect time to initiate this policy might be now."

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "What are you talking about? A policy other than the education policy and the workers rights act?"

 

His father nods.  "And I think that this happening just might be the perfect segway into introducing it to the public."

 

Hoseok suddenly squeezes his hand. Jungkook turns to look at him but the older was still staring at his father. His eyes were wide and he was looking at him like he had just been given the shock of his life.

 

"You don't mean...?" Hoseok starts, voice wobbling with uncertainty. It couldn't be.

 

His father nods again, a soft smile on his face. "We want to give legal marriage rights and national recognition to same sex couples."

 

Jungkook's pretty sure his eyes are bugging out of his head by this point. He had absolutely no idea his father had been thinking of enacting something like this.

 

"You...?" he stutters, "You never told me you were working on this."

 

His father shakes his head, "It is only me and a few of my most trusted advisers who discussed it and worked to come up with ways in which we could make it happen."

 

"H-How...?" Hoseok asks, "I mean, I've seen so many activist groups trying to get a bill passed but as far as I know nothing's come of it."

 

His father sighs, "It's difficult, it's true. The education bill is only just now gaining traction after months of opposition. I'm not saying throwing this in here so close to policy elections is the best thing to do, but I think that the subject is unavoidable now. There's no avoiding it especially if we are bombarded with questions about the relationship between you two."

 

"I don't want the two of you to hide your relationship either," his father continues, "I want to support my son and anyone he chooses to love. It just so happens that I've been waiting for the perfect time to publicly announce my support for the LGBT+ community. I can't change the fact that your relationship has been outed without your permission, but perhaps I can help to ensure that it was not for nothing."

 

Hoseok was quiet for a long time, just staring at the ground. Jungkook desperately wanted to know what he was thinking.

 

"So you're saying you want to use our relationship as the face of your campaign to legalize gay marriage?" Hoseok asks, eyes flickering up between the coffee table and his father.

 

He nods. "That's right. If the both of you are okay with it, then we can use this invasion of privacy as a tool of advocacy to help a large community of people who have very little rights in this country."

 

"Our relationship would be at the center of it all?" Hoseok asks, but it comes out a bit unsure. Jungkook couldn't get a read on Hoseok at all right now. Was he against the idea of their relationship being so public? Jungkook didn't even know what he was thinking himself. 

 

"You two would end up being in the eye of the media for a long time I'm afraid, especially during the initial campaigning process. But after that's over and it's time to vote in congress it is likely that no more media will be surrounding you. If the outcome is successful like I'm hoping it to be then you may have to stay in the public eye for a little longer but then it will surely die down quickly afterwards."

 

The room is quiet for a good long while. His father looks between the both of them.

 

"The choice is entirely yours," he says, "I will not force anything upon you. Only do if this if it is what you would like to do. If not, then we will work to fix this some other way."

 

He stands up, "You two take some time to think about it. You don't have to make up your mind right away. I just came here to discuss it with you."

 

His father walks over to Jungkook and leans over to give him a kiss on the forehead. 

 

He then walks over to Hoseok and he stands up to bow to him again. His father gives Hoseok a warm smile.

 

"Welcome to the family," he says, holding a  hand out for Hoseok to shake. The brown haired man flusters and bows again, taking his hand and shaking.

 

"Uh t-thank you..." he says awkwardly. His father gives him a pat on the shoulder and another smile before turning around and wishing them a good night.

 

He leaves the two of them alone in the room in silence.

 

Jungkook takes Hoseok's hand, still standing, and pulls him gently down so they're sitting side by side snugly on the couch.

 

"Hyung?" Jungkook asks hesitantly.

 

Hoseok looks at him, a bit in a daze, like he wasn't sure where he was or what was going on.

 

"Did...did that really just happen?" Hoseok asks, pointing his thumb at the door where his father had just disappeared through. Jungkook nods. "I...I don't know what's happening..."

 

"We have an opening," Jungkook says, leaning against the couch, body half draped across Hoseok's and the other giving him some breathing room. He looks down, a bit ashamed, "I'm sorry that being with me is putting you through all of this. When...when I first asked you to take this job, I had no idea that all of this would happen. I just wanted...well, I don't know what I wanted. "

 

Hoseok's head snaps up and he looks Jungkook in the eyes. It's then that his facial expression changes and it looks like he finally gets something.

 

Jungkook squirms, "I just had a good feeling about you. Something about you just radiated...I can't even explain it. I had the time of my life being with you. It never once felt to me like you were my bodyguard and not because you weren't doing your job right, but because you make it impossible to not...fall. To fall for you. I fell for you and I don't regret it. Even through all of the shit that's happened, I don't regret falling in love with you."

 

Jungkook bites his lips, clutching Hoseok's hands, "My dad told me about my mother and their relationship. How she wasn't used to this life, and tried to be a part of it regardless because she loved my dad. In the end, it didn't work for her. Couldn't. She wasn't suited for this life. I don't want to do that to you. So, I'm giving you the option. I won't hate you for whatever decision you make. I'll always love you regardless of whether you choose to be a part of this with me or..." Jungkook fights off scared tears,"...you choose to leave."

 

They're both quiet. Hoseok in contemplation and Jungkook in anticipation--of what, he didn't know. 

 

Hoseok's hand slips out of Jungkook's and for a moment his throat seizes with fear. But then the hands are on his face, touching his skin and watching him. Hoseok's eyes caress his face, following the paths of his fingers. Up along his face, along his lips and chin, swiping along the acne scars left on his cheeks that used to haunt him and put him off looking at his own face in the mirror. The reminiscences of the frailty of youth that he had grown out of. Or had just thought he had.

 

"I think...I would be okay with it," Hoseok whispers out slowly. 

 

Jungkook's eyes flicker with hope and confusion. His hands grip onto Hoseok like he was his last lifeline on a sinking ship. As if it was the only thing he could do to keep him from floating away. 

 

"Seriously?" he asks, searching Hoseok's eyes for any hint of hesitation. "This isn't going to be easy, hyung. It's gonna take years. What if--what if we don't make it? What if something happens to us and everything was for nothing and--"

 

His voice chokes up when he sees the sincere smile on Hoseok's face. He can't even bring himself to finish the sentence.

 

"H-Hyung?"

 

Hoseok smiles at him, widely, then leans in a presses a large kiss to his cheek.  It makes his skin tingle so intensely it almost felt like burning.

 

"Jungkookie," Hoseok kisses his other cheek, "My love, my sweetness..." he kisses the side of his chin on the corner of his mouth. "I mean no disrespect but, I'm not your mother. I understand why she did what she did...but that's not me."

 

Jungkook's swallows painfully over a thick lump in his throat.

 

"My heart was in this till the end," he says, "From the moment I kissed you back in the White House in America. I might not have always known it, and I admit I was scared--still am. It's not gonna be easy. It might get close to breaking us, but I faith. I have hope. In us. In what we are. I know it now... I'm not going anywhere."

 

Jungkook sucks in his lip, trying his hardest to blink back the overwhelmed tears.

 

"A-Are you sure?" it comes out choked and not at all like he had it together. He knew his emotions were written all over his face clear as day for Hoseok to see.

 

 "I'm not sure of anything. But I know that I would rather try than never know what we could've been. What we could become," Hoseok brings their faces closer so he could rest his forehead against Jungkook's. 

 

"You're my all or nothing, darling," Hoseok breathes his words into his skin like a promise. "I'm yours for life."

 

A promise, carved into his heart with the brush of Hoseok's lips against his. Or maybe not a promise, but a wish. A wish wrapped around them securely with words, more than the silly glass promises of humans, easily breakable with a single stone thrown. Their words weren't invincible and their promises could break but their wish buried deep inside was stronger than anything else. They believed in each other, believed more than anything that the other meant more to them than any other kind of life without. That was more than enough to ready them for whatever was to come for them next. 

 

And wasn't that the best promise they could ever make each other?

 

Chapter Text

Four Years Later:

 

"Turn the volume up, hyung," his voice comes from the kitchen, as he rounds the corner into the living room. Hoseok grabs the remote control and he presses the increase button until Jungkook could hear the voices coming from the TV screen loud and clear from where he was.

 

"Today Former President's Jeon successor was officially sworn into office. In his inauguration speech Former Senator Park Bogum gives a heartfelt nod to his predecessor and thanks him for his contributions to the nation within his eight year term as President."

 

"I would like to thank Former President Jeon Kyungmin for his unending faith in this country and all that it could achieve. Thanks to his successful education bill and workers rights act, our country has seen an impressive rise in quality production and overall quality of living. He's proven to us that he cared more than just about what the citizens could do for the country, but what this country could do for it's citizens. I'm proud to announce that our countries percentage of college graduates has increased, and our unemployment rate has gone down by a staggering amount. But even more important than all of us, I am extremely proud and grateful for the fact that our countries overall suicide rate has gone down by ten percent. This is a monumental statistic and it is all in thanks to President Jeon's continuous support of increasing welfare for our nation's elderly and his careful insurance that our education system fostered healthy minds beyond that of simple intelligence. 

 

This is not to say that he had done this all himself. His family was a large support and so were those who worked directly underneath him in the other branches of the government--myself included. I'm proud to be standing here, our nations new president elect. I worked as a supporter of these policies under Former President Jeon, and now I will continue to insure that our nation only becomes better from here on out. Former President Jeon's LGBTQ+ Rights Act was recently accepted by the Parliament and I intend to work to make sure that this country is safe and fostering for all citizens regardless of sexual orientation. My first priority when I enter office will be to make sure Former President Jeon's policies will be solidified and improved even further. I promise to work for this country. To make sure that we are country focused on prosperity and progress. I humbly accept the position and I thank the entire nation and every single citizen kindly for everything they have done to make this is a great country to live in. Thank you."

 

The news switches back to the newscasters commentary and Jungkook slides into his spot on the couch besides Hoseok, fitting into his side perfectly like a glove.

 

Hoseok shakes his head, turning his head to look at his boyfriend.

 

"Can you believe it only took four years for that bill to finally get approved in the senate?" Hoseok asks, running his hands over Jungkook's shoulders as the younger snuggled into him.

 

Jungkook snorts, "It got rejected twice in the House and then when we finally thought it would push through the senate goes and screws us over. I honestly thought we had it the last time."

 

Hoseok groans, rolling his eyes. "I know. Politics."

 

Jungkook hums, "Yeah well, it's not really either of our responsibilities anymore. We did our part and that's more than enough. We did all we could possibly could do and look where it got us? We finally got approved and now all we need is Park Bogum to finalize it and then it's done."

 

"Done?" Hoseok echoes.

 

Jungkook nods, smiling cheekily, "Yep. Then gay marriage will be legally recognized in our very own country of South Korea. Not only that but anti-discrimination laws and access to legal adoption. We finally did it."

 

Hoseok sighs, picking up Jungkook's arm and snuggling into his side, fixing his arm over his frame. They lean into the side of the couch, bodies pressed firmly against one another, soaking up each other's warmth. Hoseok snuggles into him and presses his nose to his shoulder, breathing in the scent of his cologne on his clothes. He breathes out a slow sigh.

 

"I'm so relieved."

 

Jungkook runs his fingers through his boyfriend's hair. "You wanna get married?"

 

Hoseok smacks him in the ribs, "You've asked me that every day since the bill passed in congress."

 

"And you've refused to give me an answer every day since the bill passed in congress," Jungkook argues, pouting, "I'm starting to think you don't want to marry me."

 

"Shut up, I've been with you for almost five years now. Of course I want to get married," Hoseok grumbles into the skin of his neck. "We just can't jump the gun just yet. It's not legal yet."

 

"But it's going to be in a few months. By the time it would take us to plan a wedding, marriage will be legal."

 

Hoseok groans, "Can we talk about this later?" He pushes himself up out of Jungkook's arm and gets up, dodging Jungkook's grabby hands. He knew that if he got caught in them that Jungkook would drag him back down and wrap around him like a squid with extra strong suction cups and never let him go. But he had work.

 

"Why does Jin hyung need you at the restaurant today of all days?" Jungkook grumbles.

 

Hoseok snickers, "I told you it's the opening of the fourth restaurant."

 

"And you have to be there because...?"

 

"Because I'm co-owner now?" Hoseok supplies, giving his same hiccupy laugh, "I have to show my support regardless of if I want to or not."

 

"You know, when Jin offered you the job as the manager of his second restaurant I really wasn't expecting the two of you to open two more and for you to become co-owners," Jungkook tells him, pushing his legs out and lounging further along the couch.

 

Hoseok scoffs, "And I wasn't expecting you to write a book and publish it and suddenly be more famous than ever before."

 

Jungkook ducks his head into the couch pillow, "Whoopsies?"

 

Hoseok rolls his eyes, "Yeah. Whoopsies."

 

"But hey, that book was a huge proponent for the bill and I think you should be thanking me not shaming me," Jungkook stands up and moves over so that he's standing right against the closet where Hoseok is changing his clothes. He puts on a crisp, white button up and nice slacks. He looked attractive as hell and these were his work clothes. And here Jungkook had thought that his old uniform when he'd worked as his bodyguard was hot. This outfit was a million times hotter. 

 

As Hoseok buttons up the shirt, Jungkook reaches out and unbuttons the top five buttons and pulls them apart so that he can see the skin of Hoseok's collarbones.

 

The elder tsks at him and moves to button up one of the buttons that he'd unbuttoned. He leaves the other 4 where they were at, and Jungkook smiles in victory. 

 

"You sure you can't stay?" Jungkook asks, running a sultry finger down Hoseok's chest. His tone catches Hoseok's attention and his eyes scan his face. He raises an eyebrow.

 

"What's in it for me?" he asks, voice dipping low to the same frequency Jungkook's was at. He looks all up and down Jungkook's body. He was leaning against the dresser, baggy pants billowing around him, making his thighs look even fuller than they already were. His own over sized shirt was slipping around his shoulders and Jungkook knew he looked inviting.

 

"I don't know," Jungkook heaves himself up, taking one slow step after another towards his shorter lover who was eyeing him with appreciative eyes. He wets his lips with his tongue. He wraps his arms loosely around Hoseok's shoulders, leaning his head down until his nose nudged ever so slightly against the pulsating skin of his neck. "Anything you want?"

 

Hoseok hums deep in his chest, a guttural sound that grows into a groan by the time it escapes his lips. His fingers inch around his waist, scrunching his pants in his palms and making his knuckles protrude as he pulls him forward slowly. They rub against each other and Jungkook's eyes roll back in his head as the muted pleasure rolls through him.

 

Hoseok leans his mouth forward, mouthing along his neck until he reaches his ear. "Anything?"

 

Jungkook just nods, his lips unable to do anything but wobble from the feel of Hoseok's warm fingers on his sensitive skin.

 

"Anything."

 

He kisses him deeply then, lips sliding together in their usual dance of heated desire. Jungkook's arms squeeze, wanting Hoseok closer to him. Closer. Hoseok bites his lip and small shocks zing through him and he feels the excitement rise inside him.

 

Abruptly, Hoseok pulls back, patting his shoulder. "I gotta go to work. We'll continue this later."

 

Jungkook whines deep, latching onto him like a naughty child being dropped off at preschool and refusing to let their mother leave them. Hoseok just kisses his pouted lips and then pulls away from him, leaving his arms uncomfortably empty.

 

"Fine," Jungkook harrumphs. Hoseok turns around and smiles at him as his finishes getting ready. "But you just wait till later."

 

He follows Hoseok all the way to the door, where the eldest turns around and pulls him forward again. Their lips are back together, moving against each other in lovely harmony yet again and he can't resist the smile that forms.

 

"I absolutely can't wait," Hoseok murmurs against his lips when he pulls back. "I'll see you later, darling."

 

Hoseok grabs his bag and then heads out the door. Jungkook whispers out a content, "Bye." He leans against the door frame and watches as Hoseok walks down the hall of their apartment complex that they had moved into several years ago and presses the button to the elevator.

 

Jungkook watches him until the doors open and his lover gets into the empty elevator. He presses the button and then turns back to him. Their eyes lock from down the hall and Jungkook's heart was right there with him in the elevator as Hoseok's beaming smile disappears behind metal doors.

 

*****

 

Jungkook knocks on the heavy wooden door. The sound echoes but from somewhere inside he hears the sound of someone yelling to answer the door. 

 

He waits on the door step for a few minutes, hands folded in front of him until the door opens and a familiar face pops out.

 

"Jungkookie!" his father beams, "come in, come in!"

 

His father ushers him in through the door and as soon as he steps over the threshold his father has his arms wrapped around him in his usual bone crushing hug that still felt like home every time. His father pulls away and steers him into the living room.

 

His wife is sitting there. 

 

Jungkook bows politely. She gives him a courteous nod and that's about the extent of their conversation. Over the years she had slowly gotten over her dislike of him, coming to find that there was nothing she could do to keep him under her thumb and just gave up.  Their relationship had become neutral over the past four years. They were polite and acknowledged each other but nothing more beyond that.

 

He wished he could say the same for his brother.  

 

He hadn't spoken to his brother since the day he walked out of his father's office. Neither had his brother spoken to him or tried to contact him. Some little tiny part of himself, buried deep inside his heart, wished he could make amends with his brother.  He wished he could shake his brother's hands and they would whisper sincere apologies to each other and maybe...get past everything. 

 

Perhaps someday this would dream would be realized. Jungkook didn't want that last bit of negativity to be weighing on him for the rest of his life. He would try, he promised himself;  try to reconcile with his brother.

 

He and Hoseok had discussed it for weeks--months even. Jungkook had fallen into complete hatred over his brother and it had weighed on him, effecting his mental health. He would get irrationally angry some days and other days he would refuse to get up out of bed for the migraines were taking a toll. He had Hoseok to thank for making him see that he had to forgive his brother in order to feel better. For a time, he had been considering revenge. He had been that seething. Instead, he and Hoseok discussed it and Jungkook raged and Hoseok yelled and then Jungkook sobbed and Hoseok held him as his own tears trailed from his eyes. They held each other close and then the next morning, Jungkook had realized it.

 

He couldn't leave it like that.

 

He didn't know how long it would take them, but somehow, someday, he would make up with his brother. Even if they couldn't ever have a positive relationship, a good one, they could at least not have one filled with animosity.

 

He spent the evening with his father, out in his garden attached to their home. It was the one place in Jungkook's childhood home where he remembered feeling the closest to his father. He would stay home on Sunday evenings and his wife would be out making dinner and Junghyun would be away with his friends and Jungkook would just sit in the garden with his father and ask him about flowers.

 

Now he sat there with him, handing him any of the tools he needed and patting down the soil.

 

"So," his dad starts, "How's Hoseok?"

 

Jungkook looks up, dusting the dirt residue off his gloves, "He's fine. The restaurants doing really well. Seokjin hyung's happy with the extra help and Hobi gets half the earnings of all the restaurants; even the ones he doesn't personally manage."

 

His father smiles brightly, chuckling as he clips a branch of another plant, "That's wonderful to hear, son. I'm glad you're both doing well."

 

"Yeah..." Jungkook sighs, stroking a lazy finger in the soil, "Sucks he can't be with me all the time anymore."

 

His father stops, putting down his trimmers and sits down at Jungkook's level. "I know it was a tough transition...going from having him glued to your side everyday to suddenly only seeing him after certain hours."

 

Jungkook nods, "It's been four years though. I thought I wouldn't miss him as much after that amount of time."

 

His father gives a rueful smile, "Aigoo, my son, don't feel bad about missing him when he's gone. That's how love is. You miss them when they're gone, even if it's only for a little while and you know they're coming back. Plus you always were a clingy child; never let go of my leg to let me go to work."

 

Embarrassed chuckles escape Jungkook's lips. "I suppose."

 

His father pats him on the back, rubbing his shoulders, "There's not a day that goes by that I don't miss your mother. You, Jungkookie, are doing just fine. Hoseok's lucky to have you."

 

He looks down, fidgeting with the velcro edges of the gloves. He mumbles, "I'm lucky to have him."

 

His dad gives him a secret smile and a wink. "Speaking of Hoseok...have you given any thought to what we talked about last time?"

 

Jungkook's head pops up. His face burns red, "I-I um...I haven't had a chance to talk to him about it yet."

 

"Yeah, but it's still something you think you want to do right?" he asks, "That's why I brought it up."

 

Jungkook nods, more certain than anything, "It is. I...I bought it already."

 

His dad looks shocked at that, "You did?"

 

He nods, hiding his face in his collar. "Yeah. It's in my bag upstairs."

 

"Why did you bring it here?"

 

Jungkook shrugs, "I don't know, I just...I like carrying it around with me. I like the weight of it in my pocket. We've joked around about it for such a long time but...having it actually there, in the palm of my hand or making an indent in my jacket...it makes it seem real. I like that feeling, a lot."

 

His father barks a laugh that startles him, dropping the tool he had in his hand. "Son, you're so cute. Remind me a helluva lot of me. C'mon, let's go inside and eat dinner. I'm sure it's ready by now."

 

They stand up, dusting dirt off their pants and go inside to the mud room, where they change their boots and take off their gloves to wash their hands. After they finish, his father leaves him with a pat on the bum to go help his wife in the kitchen. 

 

"Can't have her doing all the work now, can we?" he asks, a hacking laugh on his lips, "I'm retired, not an invalid."

 

Jungkook goes to make a call to someone at work then returns to the living room. He takes a peek into the kitchen to see his father working alongside his mother until the food looked almost finished. Jungkook still didn't know how he felt about their relationship or how his step-mother had treated him, but looking at them, he could see why they chose each other or at least why she loved his father.

 

When the doorbell rang, Jungkook jumped from where he had sat down on the couch. 

 

He opens the door to a smiling face. "Hoseok!"

 

He rams into him, wrapping him up in a hug that surprises the older man.

 

"Whoa, Kookie!" he laughs, brightly, clutching him close, "Looks like somebody missed me."

 

"You have no idea," he mumbles too low for Hoseok to hear. Thankfully Hoseok's scarf keeps the sound muffled enough for Hoseok not to hear.

 

His father's voice comes from behind them.

 

"Son!" he calls out, addressing Hoseok, "You're finally here! How was work? Quick, come in come in, dinner's just about ready."

 

Hoseok beams and the Jeon men drag him inside the house, Jungkook secretly melting over the way his father had taken to calling Hoseok his son too whenever he came around. They didn't even have time for pleasantries they were rushed into the dining room and Hoseok's plate was filled with food to the brim, Jungkook smiling and laughing at Hoseok's face the whole time.

 

They spend a pleasant evening together and after dinner, Hoseok says he's going to go take a shower and meet Jungkook in his room to sleep. They were going to stay the night and leave after breakfast the next morning.

 

It was getting late but Jungkook felt restless, like he couldn't sit still on his bed. Hoseok had just gotten in the shower and it would be a while before he got out. Jungkook knew how much the man loved the shower, he took ages when he was allowed to take his time.

 

So Jungkook got up, slipped on a jacket and decided to go sit for a bit on the porch in the backyard. Walking out, there was a chill in the night air. He rubbed his hands against his arms as he exhaled and watched his white breath escape his lungs into the air. 

 

He sat down on the porch seat, not bothering to turn on the light since the small light from the greenhouse was bright enough to be able to see in the dark.

 

He could feel the weight of the velvet box in his pocket. He rubbed the pad of his thumb over the material, feeling the small fuzz fold back and forth with each swish. He tucked it into his palm, rolling it around and around before he finally gained the courage to take it out of his pocket.

 

He popped open the case and stared at the glittering metal band. He eyed the patterns engraved on it, intricate and precise. When he'd seen it at the store (the jewelry store he'd made an appointment to go to) it jumped out at him right away. 

 

He'd bought it on impulse, without looking at any others despite the jewelers insistence. He'd kept it on his person for a whole month, not even trusting himself to put it in a hiding place for fear that Hoseok would stumble upon it accidentally. 

 

He liked the way the ring glinted so strongly off the light. It reminded me of the way such small things like a puppy popping up on a commercial on TV or Jungkook yawning (which Hoseok found unbearably cute for some reason) would make Hoseok break into a smile like a saturated sunrise on a slow dark morning.

 

Jungkook found the side of his mouth quirking up in a smile at the thought. 

 

He stopped when from somewhere behind him he smelt smoke.

 

He turns around, stopping when he sees a figure standing there, a burning cigarette in between his lips. He brings the cigarette down and blows out the smoke, a mixture of white and swirling gray. 

 

"Junghyun," Jungkook says, staring with disbelief that his older brother had actually shown up. "What are you doing here?"

 

Junghyun shrugs, "Came to say hi to mom and dad. It's Chuseok. Was about to leave but stopped for a smoke."

 

Jungkook nods, turning back around to stare at the backyard awkwardly. 

 

His brother walks up forward, not sitting down but not exactly turning away from him either.

 

"Is that ring for Hoseok?" he asks, voice scratchy and hollow from continued smoking for what was probably years now. 

 

The thought strikes Jungkook, a huff of a laugh coming out, "I think that's the first time you've said his name without disdain."

 

Jungkook didn't mean to sound so petty, but it was hard not to when for so long all Jungkook felt for his brother was hate. He didn't want to feel that anymore and for a moment he worries that he might have pushed his brother away even further.

 

His brother doesn't answer him directly. Instead, he shifts on his feet, taking in another inhale of smoke before he blows it out slowly, creating skilled rings in the air. 

 

"It's nice," he says, nodding to the velvet box still visible in Jungkook's hand. "Suits you both."

 

Jungkook stares at his older brother in silence. That was probably the first time in his entire life his brother had said something that sounded genuinely sincere to him. He didn't know how to respond. How was he supposed to respond? He'd never been put in a semi-decent conversation with his brother before.

 

"Thanks," is all Jungkook manages to say. Junghyun doesn't react at all, just takes in another puff of smoke.

 

They both sit there in the dead of night, Junghyun smoking and Jungkook staring at his ring until Junghyun flicks his cigarette out onto the concrete and then stubs it out.

 

He turns to leave but not before giving Jungkook one last glance, "Good luck, Kook."

 

That's all he says before he exits out the back door to their backyard that leads to the front of the house. Jungkook sits there watching his shadow disappear behind the light.

 

He gives a small smile, then snaps the velvet box shut.

 

*******

 

By the time he goes back up to bed, Hoseok was already sitting there with his reading glasses on, scrolling through his phone.

 

"Hey," he says when he sees Jungkook walk in, "Everything okay? You weren't here when I got back so I assumed you went to talk to your dad for a moment or something."

 

Jungkook shucks his shirt off, lifting the covers and sliding into the bed on the other side of Hoseok. He wraps his arms around Hoseok's waist, letting his hand slide up the side of his skin.

 

"Nah, I just went outside for some fresh air," he answers honestly. "Clear my head a little."

 

"Something on your mind?" Hoseok asks, shutting his phone screen and placing it on the bedside table before turning around to lay down next to Jungkook, wrapping himself up in Jungkook's hold. "Wanna talk about it?"

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "Not really just...I missed you."

 

The confession makes Hoseok smile, grabbing Jungkook's face and kissing his cheeks and squishing them with a laugh that makes Jungkook grumble despite the fact that it felt really really nice. 

 

"You're so cute, Jungkookie," he whispers as he cradles him close. Jungkook squeezes him tight.

 

"Everyone's been saying that today," he mutters underneath his breath.

 

"That's because it's true," Hoseok chuckles, smacking his behind. "Getting cuter with age if that's even possible."

 

"I'm not old."

 

"Neither am I."

 

"Beg to differ."

 

Hoseok pinches him on the side.

 

"Ahh--ow ow, okay I lied you're a delicate flower of youth with gorgeous sparkling petals; I marvel at your beauty," he quickly spits out to appease him.

 

"As long as you're aware," Hoseok pulls back, satisfied, only for Jungkook to pull him close again, crawling practically on top of him until he was half on the bed, half on Hoseok.

 

Hoseok runs a hand through his hair, stopping to massage at his neck, "Are you sure you're feeling okay, love?"

 

Jungkook nods, his head against Hoseok's chest, feeling his heartbeat in his ear, "Yeah."

 

They were both quiet for a moment before Jungkook turns to press a kiss into Hoseok's chest.

 

"I saw Junghyun just now."

 

To Hoseok's credit, he tries really hard not to jump up. Actually, his reaction was rather subdued, just a sharp surprised inhale in. 

 

"Yeah?" he asks. "How...uh, how--?"

 

Jungkook shakes his head, "I don't even know if that counted as an actual conversation but...it was okay. I think."

 

"Yeah?" Hoseok's voice lifts at the end, a hopeful lift like he thought that the whole encounter might've gone well.

 

Jungkook thought so too.

 

"Yeah." Jungkook says, nuzzling into Hoseok's chest who tilts his chin up and kisses him sweetly on the lips. Jungkook wants to push forward to kiss him back, but he pulls away to kiss his forehead.

 

"That's good, Kookie," he smiles and rubs his arms under the covers to gather more warmth. "Really good."

 

"Mmm," Jungkook agrees, then shifts forward so that he was face to face with Hoseok, leaning down to capture his lips.

 

Hoseok kisses him back immediately, arms coming up to circle around his neck and drag him down further. Jungkook licks into his mouth, tasting the familiar taste of mint toothpaste and his coconut shampoo scent drifting through his nose. 

 

The lights were off and Jungkook let himself fall deeper into the warm light that was Hoseok. Somewhere in the back of his mind, like it had been for the past month, he remembers the velvet box in his jacket pocket lying on the chair back.

 

He slows their kisses down until they were both just languidly lapping at each other's mouths. Jungkook brings his hand up, brushing Hoseok's soft hair away from his eyes. With their eyes closed and lips barely brushing against each other, but still connected by the sticky skin of their lips, Jungkook breathes out a question.

 

"Hoseok," he whispers, thumbs rubbing his cheek, "Will you marry me?"

 

And even though he's asked so many times before, something about this one seems different. Maybe it was the way it lingered in the warm air, settling into his ears like soft feathers. He could feel the heat of Hoseok's smile even through his closed eyelids as the elder reaches up and slots their mouths together again.

 

Smiling throughout their kiss, Hoseok whispers back with a giddy reassurance.

 

"Only if you swear to marry me too," he slides his free hand through Jungkook's, threading their fingers together.

 

Hoseok swallows Jungkook's chuckles like honey, tasting the unspoken promises like sugar.

 

"On my life," Jungkook says softly, pressing his entire heart into Hoseok's hands, "I swear."