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imprints on your skin

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It’s a sticky hot summer afternoon and Chanyeol is sprawled flat out on his back in his apartment floor, three fans working to make the air in the apartment even a little bit cooler. Beside him, Jongin is lying on his stomach, feet kicked up in the air and occasionally swinging back and forth. He’s scribbling things into a notebook, looking between the sheets and what seems to be his calculus textbook. It’s a Saturday afternoon and Jongin is doing homework while Chanyeol is melting.

Chanyeol pokes him in the side with a toe, but Jongin doesn’t pay him any attention. So he slowly nudges the flimsy fabric of Jongin’s white tank up his body, exposing the slightly sweaty slicked skin of his lower back. He licks his lips.

“What’re you doing?” Jongin asks, deadpan. He doesn’t even look up from his book.

Chanyeol pouts. “I’m bored.”

“Play a video game or something,” Jongin responds. “I’m trying to work.”

“Work later,” Chanyeol whines, gently slides the heel of his foot over Jongin’s ass. He’s only wearing a pair of grey boxer shorts, and Chanyeol can feel the shudder that trembles through his body at the touch. His attention is slipping. Jongin hasn’t written down a word in ten minutes.

“Stop,” he says helplessly, and when Chanyeol cackles, Jongin throws a thick marker at him from the pile of pens he’d dumped onto the floor earlier in search of a highlighter.

Chanyeol laughs louder as the marker hits him in the chest and he grabs it, then pulls himself up. Jongin eyes him warily, and Chanyeol pounces, capturing Jongin in a hug and presses his lips to the nape of his neck.

A loud strangled noise of frustration leaves Jongin’s lips and he’s trying to elbow Chanyeol off, complaining that it’s too fucking hot for this shit, and while Chanyeol half agrees, he doesn’t think the weather should ever come in between making out. It’s a struggle but he manages to find Jongin’s mouth with his own, slightly chapped against his, but perfectly full and delightful as always. He tastes like the lemonade he’d been drinking earlier and it’s addictive, licking his way into Jongin’s mouth deeper, tongue slipping across the back of his teeth. Jongin is quick to give up then, fingers clenching into the front of Chanyeol’s old tee. It’s starting to rip at the hem and the the collar is frayed from when Chanyeol cut it apart a few years ago and Jongin tells him to throw it away whenever he wears it, but now he uses his grip to draw Chanyeol closer, twisting himself until he’s settled on his back on the floor, his head pillowed in his textbook.

Sweat beads along Chanyeol’s hairline and he pulls away slowly, enjoying the disapproving whine that Jongin emits. He tries to pull him back but Chanyeol just kneels above him, catching his breath. He’s still got that marker in his hand, he realizes, and he smirks down at Jongin, biting the cap between his teeth to open it.

“What are you doing?” Jongin says again, this time a little dubious, as Chanyeol pushes up the front of his shirt and licks a slow path down his chest to the flat of his abs. “Shit--” Jongin gasps, body relaxing at the heat of Chanyeol’s tongue, and it’s enough to distract him as Chanyeol tugs on his boxers, exposing the jut of his hipbone. The first press of the marker to his skin has Jongin jerking, nearly smacking Chanyeol in the face with his knee. “Chanyeol, what the--Stop! Don’t fucking write on me, what is wrong with you--”

“Just wait,” Chanyeol interrupts, ignoring all of Jongin’s protests to press his arm over Jongin’s waist and pin him to the floor. He writes quickly but in precise, even strokes, and the black ink stands out stark against Jongin’s skin. Chanyeol stares down at his handiwork afterward in fascination, a wicked grin on his lips, and Jongin is shoving him over to get a look down at it too.

“Did you just fucking write your name across my hipbone?” Jongin exclaims, incredulous. He looks at Chanyeol torn between disbelief and amusement. Maybe something else, too, lingering in the corners of his eyes as he stares back down at the ink on his hip and up at Chanyeol again. He swallows, thickly, adam’s apple bobbing in his throat, and Chanyeol grins.

“Yes,” Chanyeol answers him. He can barely look away from Jongin’s hip, either. It was just supposed to be a little joke, something to get back at him for ignoring him in favor of studying. But now...now Chanyeol feels hot all over, in a way that has nothing to do with the terrible summer heat. “Gotta stake my claim, you know,” he adds, trying to lighten the mood, make a joke of it, but it doesn’t help. At least not for him.

Jongin, on the other hand, groans loudly, and this time, throws his textbook at Chanyeol’s head.

 

-

 

Two days later and they’re getting ready in the morning, throwing clothes around to find something clean to wear, and that’s when Chanyeol notices it. Jongin’s halfway out of an ugly Iron Man shirt he keeps here to wears to sleep whenever Jongdae’s not around and Chanyeol catches sight of his hip -- and his name still scribbled in black ink across the skin.

He thought for sure Jongin had scrubbed it off by now, but it’s still there. Slightly faded, sure, but there, dark enough still that it’s visible on Jongin’s tanned skin and Chanyeol’s throat feels suddenly dry. He reaches out to tug Jongin close by hooking his finger into the band of his underwear and Jongin raises a brow as he stumbles into him.

“It’s still there,” he says, and he hopes his voice doesn’t come out as strangled to Jongin as it does to himself. He presses his thumb over the marks, tracing the letters of his name slowly, carefully. He doesn’t want to rub it off.

“It fucking won’t wash off,” Jongin snaps, shoving at him. But there’s a blush forming high on his cheeks. He looks down at Chanyeol’s name on his hip and his gaze lingers there a bit too long, but then he’s grabbing his shirt off the bed and dragging it on, and it’s hidden from sight. Chanyeol is surprised at how much he hates that. “I still can’t believe you fucking wrote your name on me. So stupid.”

He sounds oddly fond, instead of annoyed, and Chanyeol grins at him, walks over to wrap arms around his waist from behind. “You love it,” he says, and Jongin’s breath hitches, but he turns around and looks Chanyeol straight in the eye.

“So do you,” he returns. He holds Chanyeol’s gaze for a few long seconds in which Chanyeol’s sure his heart is going to hurdle straight out of his chest, because Jongin’s right, he does like it, and he’s not entirely sure why.

Jongin draws away then, before Chanyeol can figure it out, and for the rest of the day, and the day after, they don’t say anything else about it.

 

-

 

It’s when Chanyeol’s name has all but faded from Jongin’s skin that Chanyeol press the marker against his hip and carefully trace back over the lines he’d left days earlier. Jongin is shivering under him, eyes wide and lower lip sucked into his mouth, and he doesn’t stop him. He’s watching, as best as he can, as he’s lying flat against the bed, and Chanyeol enjoys the heat of his gaze as he concentrates on marking Jongin again. It might be temporary, and it’ll wash away in a few days, but for now it’s enough to make Chanyeol’s heart thump loudly and arousal pool low in his belly.

When he finishes he doesn’t let Jongin go, instead he pushes his shirt up his chest, bunched up under Jongin’s armpits, and licks down his sternum. Jongin sucks in a breath, and the bed creaks under them as he wriggles, tries to get more comfortable.

Hands slide into Chanyeol's hair, gentle but urging, dragging him so Jongin can fit their mouths together. Chanyeol sighs against his lips, drops the marker off to the side and it falls over the side of the bed. Chanyeol holds Jongin's jaw in a hand, tilts him up for better access, and he breaks away to kiss down Jongin's throat. His skin is warm, too warm, from the unrelenting weather and the fact that their air conditioner has been acting up lately. It cuts off throughout the night these days, and whenever Jongin stays over he always complains at three in the morning about Chanyeol clinging to him all gross and sweaty.

It's cool in here now, and Chanyeol is thankful because it feels like his skin is burning up too. Especially as Jongin's shaky fingers slip from his hair and dip under his shirt, up over the ridges of his spine. Jongin gasps when Chanyeol presses his tongue flat over a nipple, hips instinctively pushing up and he's already half-hard, tight against the front of his jeans. They're open up at the waist, tugged down low with his underwear so that Chanyeol could get to his hip to mark him again.

He pulls back as he remembers, drinks in the sight of Jongin all flushed for him, because of him, and the deep ink across his hip, Chanyeol's name bright and bold, for everyone to know that Jongin is his.

Chanyeol has never particularly thought of himself as extremely possessive, but there's something in the way the ink looks on Jongin that makes the blood in his veins hum pleasantly. He wants to mark him more.

Jongin groans out a loud, "Fuck," when Chanyeol works the flesh of his stomach, just above his name, between his teeth. "Jesus, Chanyeol, warn a person before you do shit like that," Jongin says, sounding delightfully out of breath.

“Sorry,” Chanyeol says, but he’s grinning wide and he knows he doesn’t sound even an ounce apologetic. Jongin just rolls his eyes, but as Chanyeol licks over the bite marks he’d left, his eyes flutter shut and hips rock up against Chanyeol’s mouth.

The air feels thick, almost tense around them, as Chanyeol slides his fingers teasingly across Jongin's stomach, just skimming over the band of his underwear. He flicks his eyes up to look at him, and Jongin's gaze is dark with want, and yet still slightly apprehensive.

Chanyeol feels the same. This is different from every other time, not that there's been many to begin with. It's only been three months, and in that time only inexperienced blowjobs are pretty much as far as they've gotten. This, though, right now, feels so much different, so much greater, like they're finally edging to that line Chanyeol's been itching to cross ever since Jongin sucked him off once in an empty classroom at campus. Maybe even before that.

The point is that he's not sure how far he can go now, how far Jongin will let him.

He doesn't think he can ask, so instead he presses soft, open mouthed kisses to Jongin's tummy, working around his belly-button, and Jongin’s body shrinks back from his touch instinctively like it’s too much. So responsive, Chanyeol’s always liked that about Jongin, the way he can’t ever quite hide his emotions from his face or in the sound of his voice. Right now, he’s clenching his fists into the sheets on either side of him and his tiny gasps fill the room in a way Chanyeol’s sure he’ll hear them long after Jongin’s gone back to his dorm.

“Do you like this?” Chanyeol asks, and his own voice startles him, deep and assured, even though Chanyeol already feels a little like he’s falling apart. He pulls himself up, straddling one of Jongin’s legs as he looks at him, and Jongin nods, licks his lips as he seems to gather up his thoughts.

“I think you like it more,” he says, and he releases a hand from the sheets to brush his fingers into the mark Chanyeol had left in his skin with his teeth. It’ll probably be dark and purpled by tomorrow, and Chanyeol can’t wait to see it. “You like this,” Jongin says, fingers trailing over to where Chanyeol wrote his name, “don’t you?”

“Maybe,” Chanyeol admits softly, and Jongin lets out a breathless laugh.

He tugs Chanyeol close with a hand and Chanyeol ends up sprawled against his chest, Jongin’s lips hot against his chin. “That doesn’t surprise me one bit,” Jongin murmurs, and before Chanyeol can demand what he means by that, Jongin is grabbing a fistful of hair and dragging him into a kiss.

And this takes the edge off, that uncertainty lingering in the back of Chanyeol’s mind. It’s easy to drown in Jongin’s eager kisses, the way his hands run up his sides, leaving hot trails in their wake as Jongin pushes his shirt up as far as he can until Chanyeol has to break away to pull it off completely. Chanyeol catches his mouth again after that, nipping his bottom lip between his teeth before sliding his tongue inside and Jongin’s groan sends a tumult of pleasure through his body. Chanyeol might be bigger, but Jongin is a little stronger, and he hooks a leg around Chanyeol’s and smoothly tips him over, his back hitting the mattress with a loud creak of the bed. It’s old and ratty and Jongin once joked that they’d end up breaking his bed sometime soon, and Chanyeol doesn’t doubt that anymore. He thinks it’d be pretty worth it, actually.

“Hey,” Jongin whispers, pulling Chanyeol’s attention back to him as he settles comfortably into Chanyeol’s lap. His shirt has slipped back half-way down his chest, but Chanyeol can still see his handiwork from earlier clear on Jongin’s hip.

“What?” Chanyeol says. He rests his hands on Jongin’s waist, thumb brushing over the bruise he’d left, and Jongin’s breath hitches.

“Can I--” Jongin says, hesitant, and before Chanyeol can ask what he wants exactly, Jongin is pressing his palm against the front of his jeans.

He’d been so focused on the way Jongin looked all flushed with Chanyeol’s name written across his skin, the indents of his teeth against his flesh, that Chanyeol didn’t realize just how hard he is. He feels it now though, as Jongin rubs his palm over his pants, arousal pooling low in his belly, and he nods once, twice. His hair flops into his face and he hisses, “Yeah. Yeah, okay, of course you can--”

Jongin laughs, amusement clear in his eyes, and he stops Chanyeol’s rambling with his mouth. Chanyeol gasps as Jongin ruts down against him, rubbing their erections together through their jeans. A strangled sort of gasp escapes Chanyeol’s lips, but Jongin easily swallows it down, kissing with an enthusiasm that Chanyeol hasn’t quite seen from him before. He gets it, though, because he’s pretty much the same right now, fisting his hands into the front of Jongin’s shirt and pulling him as close as he can as he draws himself up to sit back against the headboard instead of lying flat on his back.

Jongin follows him, knees on either side of Chanyeol’s lap, the insides of his thighs warm against Chanyeol’s legs even through the material of their jeans. Chanyeol releases a hand from Jongin’s shirt to reach around and cup his ass, drawing him in closer, and Jongin whimpers into his mouth as he grinds down against him again. Their mouths fit nicely together again and everything after that feels urgent, rushed, like they don’t have hours until Jongdae comes back to the apartment, until Jongin needs to meet with some classmates for a study group.

But Chanyeol doesn’t mind it, rather enjoys the needy pitch to Jongin’s voice, the breathless gasps against his lips. When Chanyeol pushes Jongin’s jeans down his hips, Jongin draws away to help quickly, kicking his clothing off onto the floor before rolling back over to help Chanyeol undo his own jeans. Jongin grins down at him, eyes all mischievous as he tugs his jeans down and off, before following with his underwear.

As they slide back together, now skin against skin, Chanyeol can’t help the moan that tumbles from his lips. Jongin shudders under his palms as he runs his hands up over the curve of his ass and along his back, fisting into the hairs at the nape of his neck. Jongin rocks his hips down, their erections brushing together in delicious friction, and it’s just what they both need. Chanyeol knows he can’t hold back much longer, and the way that Jongin clings to him once Chanyeol gets a hand around their dicks and strokes them together in a quick, unrelenting pace, ensures him that Jongin is close, too.

“Chanyeol--” His name falls from Jongin’s lips incessantly, like Jongin can’t form any other words but that, and it’s like music to Chanyeol’s ears. He loves the way Jongin is so focused on him, so focused on them together, and he tugs Jongin away from where he’s gasping into his ear to look into his face. All flushed dark and eyes bright, he looks amazing, and Chanyeol lets his gaze wander down his chest, down to where his name is still inked across Jongin’s hipbone, where that dark bruise sits stark against his skin.

Chanyeol releases the hand on the back of Jongin’s neck to reach down and press his thumb gently into the mark. Jongin keens, hips jerking forward into Chanyeol’s firm grip, dragging along Chanyeol’s dick, and they both moan, then, and Jongin drops his forehead onto Chanyeol’s shoulder, breath hot against his skin. He whimpers softly as Chanyeol slowly drags his lips down the side of his neck, scrapes his teeth over his collarbone. Jongin grinds down into him, and Chanyeol brushes his fingers across that mark again, delighting in the way it makes Jongin shudder in his arms. He likes it, it’s obvious, and Chanyeol wants to mark him even more.

He bites down into the juncture between Jongin's neck and shoulder, and Jongin's fingers claw desperately down his chest in surprise. He moans Chanyeol's name deeply and it's possibly the sexiest thing Chanyeol has ever heard, his hips bucking up instinctively as the sound goes straight to his dick, fueling his arousal even more.

"Oh god, I can't," Jongin mumbles and Chanyeol drops the hand on his waist to rub purposefully over the head of Jongin's dick. Jongin jerks into his palm, and Chanyeol bites down a little harder against his neck, and that's it. Jongin comes with a loud groan he tries to muffle into Chanyeol's shoulder, his whole body quivering in pleasure. Chanyeol feels his dick twitching against his as Jongin continues to move against him as he rides out his high, and it's not long before he follows, too, teeth sinking into Jongin's skin as he comes onto their stomachs.

His heart is racing, loud in his ears like the sounds of their ragged breaths. Jongin slowly sags in his arms, a tiny, breathless sort of chuckle tickling behind Chanyeol's ear as he lifts his head. He's smiling, sated, eyes curving happily. Catching Chanyeol's gaze, he turns a little embarrassed, the flush of exertion on his cheeks deepening, and Chanyeol's racing heart picks up it’s speed. He leans in and kisses him gently and Jongin's smile widens against his lips.

When Jongin pulls back, he's grinning. He stretches his arms over his head and Chanyeol drinks in the mark on his neck, the one on his hip. His name, precisely written across the skin. Chanyeol's name. Chanyeol's. His.

Chanyeol's heart soars.

Jongin looks at him like he knows what he's thinking, but he doesn't say anything. Instead he drops his arms and slides off Chanyeol, off the bed, ignoring Chanyeol's tiny whine to keep him there.

"I'm hungry," Jongin says, and he pouts. "Let's get some ice cream."

Chanyeol laughs, shaking his head in amusement, but lets Jongin drag him out of bed. "Clean me up first and then we'll see," he says, and Jongin easily pulls him toward the bathroom.

 

-

 

“Sehun gave me so much shit about that hickey on my neck,” Jongin grumbles to Chanyeol over the phone two days later. “I stole makeup from Baekhyun just to cover the fucking thing up.”

Chanyeol frowns. “Don’t cover it up,” he says, hoping he doesn’t sound too displeased by the fact that Jongin’s hiding the mark. “That’s not the point.”

Jongin doesn’t seem to hear him at all though. “Can’t you do that sort of thing where no one will see it?” He pauses for a moment, then adds, “This whole thing between us...it’s still supposed to be a secret.”

The frown on Chanyeol’s face deepens, and he can feel his heart sink a little in his chest. This is something he tries not to think about often, that the fact that they’re dating is something Jongin doesn’t want to be public knowledge. Chanyeol agreed to it, too, so it’s not like it’s completely Jongin’s fault, but lately Chanyeol has been wondering why he did in the first place.

He sighs, carefully balances his phone between his ear and shoulder as he opens his backpack to fish his keys out from where they’d fallen to the bottom. He kicks open the door to his apartment and shuffles in, slipping out of his shoes and dropping his bag to the floor by the closet. Jongdae waves at him from the couch where he’s got a few bags of chips open on the coffee table and Call of Duty on the television. Chanyeol manages to grin back at him before heading to the kitchen. His smile drops then, Jongin’s words still ringing loud in his head, and he says, “You’re right. It is supposed to be a secret, but--”

“Exactly! And I’m running out of excuses to tell Sehun when he asks me about it. I told him I just burned myself accidentally with a curling iron but he totally doesn’t believe me.”

The slight petulant tone to Jongin’s voice pulls a laugh from Chanyeol. He wants to tell him that maybe this means they should just come clean to their friends, but then he figures if Jongin really wanted that, he would’ve just told Sehun the truth without coming up with a lame lie. If Jongin really wanted that, he wouldn’t be calling right now to complain about marks Chanyeol leaves on his skin where people can see. Chanyeol’s heart drops into his stomach with unease, but he pushes the feeling away and forces a grin on his face, hoping he doesn’t sound disappointed to Jongin.

“I don’t know why you’re complaining so much,” he says, and he pitches his voice low so Jongdae can’t hear him, even though he’s sure Jongdae’s far too engrossed in his game to pay attention. “You liked it. I know you did.”

Jongin splutters on the other end and Chanyeol can just imagine his delightfully embarrassed face. “That’s beside the point!” Jongin exclaims, clearly flustered. “Just...be more careful next time.”

Chanyeol hums noncommittally as he rifles through the fridge for something to eat. He hasn’t seen Jongin since the other day but he can just imagine the dark bruise on his skin, peeking out beneath the collar of his shirt when he moves. “If you’re that worried about it, then it’s a good thing no one knows about the mark on your hip,” Chanyeol replies, pulling out half of a sub sandwich from two nights ago. He shuts the fridge and smirks, because as much as he likes the idea of people seeing the mark on Jongin’s hip, too, he also likes that only he and Jongin know it’s there. Their own little secret.

Jongin makes a tiny squawk of embarrassment again and then grumbles, “You’re impossible,” before hanging up.

Chanyeol just laughs, bemused, and shoves his phone back into his pocket. He unwraps his sandwich and heads over to join Jongdae, flopping onto the couch and kicking his feet up onto the table.

“What’s that disgusting smile on your face for?” Jongdae demands, casting a quick glance at him.

“Nothing,” Chanyeol replies around a mouthful of food, and tries not to think too hard about when he’ll see Jongin next and where else upon his body he can leave another mark.

 

-

 

The thing about secret relationships, Chanyeol realizes, is that they don't work very well when only one person wants the secret to be kept. In the beginning, just a few months ago, it'd been okay. After Chanyeol realized the way he looked at Jongin was different than how he looked at everyone else, after he realized that Jongin's pretty smiles made his heart beat faster and he wanted Jongin to smile at him like that. He realized, somewhere between meeting Jongin through Jongdae at an off-campus party, finding him in the corner of his literature class at the start of the new semester, and catching lunch together most days afterward that Chanyeol liked Jongin more than he was ready to admit.

He liked how Jongin was always perpetually sleepy, dozing off against Chanyeol’s shoulder in the back of their lecture hall and smiling sheepishly afterward, how he doodled anime-esque characters into the corners of his notebooks when they tried to study in the library on the weekends, how he wore Spider-man t-shirts and practiced his dance routines in his seat, uncaring of the way people looked at him curiously. After Chanyeol wallowed for weeks because he was sure Jongin didn't like him the way he did, because even though they were friends, it was never the same as how Jongin was with Sehun and Baekhyun or anyone else.

But after all of that, he eventually gave into the feeling, and the fact that this was something that wasn’t going to just go away. And Chanyeol told him, casually one night when Jongin came over to work on a joint project for their literature class. Jongin looked at him, all shocked, and Chanyeol was quick to make it better. “Nothing has to change,” he said, “we can just be friends.”

It came as a surprise, then, a week later, when Jongin had reached for his hand, hidden under the table as they had lunch. He didn’t look at Chanyeol, just continued to talk with Sehun, but his thumb brushed over Chanyeol’s knuckles soothingly and he didn't let go until they had to leave.

“I like you, too,” he told Chanyeol, later, after walking with Chanyeol back to his apartment. “God knows why, honestly, because you're ridiculous and loud and--” Whatever else Jongin had thought of him fell short because Chanyeol kissed him, right there in the street in front of his apartment building.

Jongin gasped, and clutched the front of Chanyeol's shirt, and afterward, he'd asked if they could just keep it between themselves for awhile. Chanyeol had been so incredibly happy, happy that Jongin liked him, happy that Jongin’s mouth was just as soft as he'd always imagined, happy that Jongin was holding onto him like without him there he might crumple to the floor. So happy that he'd agreed, figuring it would maybe a week or two, and then it'd be okay to hold Jongin’s hand in public, call him his boyfriend to his friends.

Except it’s been three months and Chanyeol wants more. He doesn't want to worry about Sehun waking into the dorm room he shares with Jongin, doesn't care if Jongdae comes home to them making out on the couch. He wants to tell everyone he’s happy because Jongin makes him happy. And he does, even if their relationship isn't exactly the way Chanyeol wants it to be anymore.

When they’re together, just the two of them, it’s perfect. Jongin is all his. It's when they’re out with their friends that Chanyeol has to rein in the unpleasant rage that bubbles up in his stomach.

Some days are worse than others. Chanyeol has been spending too much time thinking about his relationship with Jongin and how he wants to bring up making it public. So it grates, a little, when Jongin drops his head onto Baekhyun’s shoulder and lets Baekhyun pet his hair while they’re gathered around a table in the cafeteria on a Thursday night. Chanyeol was eating dinner and studying on his own when Jongin, Baekhyun and Junmyeon showed up, quickly claiming the other seats at the table and dropping their backpacks onto the chairs. Jongin smiled at him, secretive, and patted his shoulder as he passed by to get food.

Now, Jongin sits across from him and barely pays him any attention. Which is fine, really, because Chanyeol doesn't need Jongin's attention all the time. He would, however, like it if Baekhyun would stop touching him.

"What's up with you?" Junmyeon asks, nudging Chanyeol's shoulder. "You've been so quiet."

Chanyeol shrugs, taps his pen against the open pages of his calculus book. "Just trying to get through this," he says, finally tears his gaze away from Baekhyun's fingers wrapped into Jongin's elbow. He gives Junmyeon a tiny smile, but it must show on his face, that it's not quite genuine because Junmyeon frowns.

"Do you need help?" he asks, scooting closer to look at the problem set Chanyeol has been working on.

He doesn't need help; calculus is one of Chanyeol's best classes, but Junmyeon's easy smiles do help distract him from the other unhappy thoughts in his head. "Thanks, hyung," he says with a real grin, and he leans over to steal some of Junmyeon's french fries.

Junmyeon laughs, shakes his head, and Chanyeol twirls his pen in his hands watching as Junmyeon back-reads a few pages to see where Chanyeol's at. His attention strays when someone kicks him under the table. He snaps up and glares at Baekhyun.

"What was that for?" he says, kicks back in his direction. Baekhyun jumps, surprised.

"What? Did I kick you accidentally?" he asks, and Chanyeol turns his gaze from Baekhyun to Jongin, who is frowning intensely at his plate, like his his half-eaten sandwich has offended him.

Chanyeol is a little confused because not two seconds ago was Jongin laughing with Baekhyun looking perfectly pleased. He slides his foot up the back of what he hopes is Jongin's calf, and Jongin shifts in his seat. He glances up at Chanyeol, meets his gaze for a short moment, and looks back down.

Frowning at his behavior, Chanyeol points at Jongin’s sandwich and says, “Are you gonna finish that?” Without waiting for an answer, Chanyeol swipes the sandwich and takes a big bite out of an end. Jongin squawks, reaching out to reclaim his dinner, but Chanyeol laughs around his mouthful and leans back.

“I was gonna eat that!” Jongin says, leaning across the table as far as he can, but Chanyeol scoots his chair away.

“Don’t be a dick, Chanyeol, give it back,” Baekhyun says. “You already ate anyway.”

Chanyeol ignores him, takes another bite of the sandwich, and there’s really not much left of it anyway, so he finishes it off heartily and grins. Jongin glares at him, but Chanyeol can tell there’s no real anger there, especially not with the way the corner of his mouth twitches up in amusement. He still seems displeased from whatever was on his mind earlier, but at least he’s not gloomily staring at half-eaten dinners anymore. Chanyeol drags his chair back up against the table and pats Jongin’s head.

Jongin swats at him, drawing away and pouting. Baekhyun looks at Chanyeol with a frown, then pushes his plate toward Jongin. “You can have some of my fries if you want,” he says, “I think I’m full anyway.”

"Are you sure?" Jongin says, and when Baekhyun nods, he grins happily and takes his plate, sets it atop of his empty one. "At least Baekhyun-hyung likes me." He looks at Chanyeol as he says it, eyes mischievous, but Chanyeol doesn't feel particularly amused. He just forces out a laugh and grabs his bottle of water to drown out the sour taste in his mouth, his stomach unpleasant as Baekhyun grins approvingly and coos at Jongin, brushing his bangs away from his face.

Chanyeol really has no right to feel jealous. Baekhyun and Jongin are friends. They've been friends before Chanyeol even met Jongin. Not to mention Baekhyun has this disgusting crush on the Chinese transfer student named Yifan that practically everyone knows about (except perhaps for Yifan), and despite the prickling worry, Chanyeol believes in the way Jongin feels about him. So it's not like Chanyeol has anything to worry about. Not really. And yet...

He’s not sure what compels him to do it, really, but he reaches out and grabs Jongin’s hand that’s sitting out on the table, clicking the top of the pen in his hand and pressing the tip against Jongin’s skin. By the time Jongin’s surprise fades away and he realizes what’s happening, Chanyeol’s already gotten his name inked across the back of Jongin’s hand.

“What’re you doing?” Jongin exclaims, yanking his hand away and staring down at Chanyeol’s handiwork. He probably only looks for a second, but to Chanyeol is feels like hours, because when he finally glances back up at Chanyeol, there’s something indecipherable in his gaze. Chanyeol expected maybe anger and annoyance because this, what Chanyeol just did, probably crosses that line of secrecy Jongin wanted to maintain. Instead he just looks at Chanyeol like he’s seeing him for the first time, curious and maybe a little uncertain. He bites his lower lip and rubs his thumb over Chanyeol’s name, and the ink smudges a bit, but Chanyeol knows he’s not trying to remove it. It’s the same way he tends to gently touch that mark on his hip.

“Chanyeol, seriously, what’s up with you?” Baekhyun says, and this time he actually does kick Chanyeol under the table, startling Chanyeol so much he practically jumps in his seat.

“Sorry, sorry,” he says quickly, looking away from Jongin who hides his hand in his lap and busies himself with eating. “I’m just...tired, I guess.” He scratches the side of his face and tries not to look back at Jongin, even though he can feel the heat of his gaze on him. He stuffs his pen into his calculus book and closes it with a snap, and Junmyeon looks up in surprise.

“Didn’t you want help?” he asks.

“It’s fine,” Chanyeol says, suddenly feeling the need to get away. The way Jongin looked at him earlier is still heavy on his mind, confusing and distracting, and he doesn’t think he can sit here without wanting to reach across and maybe write his name onto Jongin’s other hand, too. “I’m gonna go, maybe sleep early or something,” he says. He stuffs his things into his bag and hastily stands.

“Well, if you’re sure,” Junmyeon says, brows furrowed in worry. Chanyeol puts on his best fake smile and waves him off. Baekhyun stares at him rather curiously, and when Chanyeol catches Jongin’s eyes, Jongin is watching him closely, still gnawing on his lower lip. Chanyeol’s smile brightens as he looks at him, and Jongin’s eyes widen a bit, before he slowly smiles back, too. They’re okay. For now.

“I’ll see you later,” he says to all of them, even though he’s still only looking at Jongin. Jongin mouths, I’ll call you, when Baekhyun and Junmyeon wave at him and turn away, and he rubs his right palm over Chanyeol’s name on the back of his left hand. Chanyeol swallows thickly and nods, hoists his backpack over his shoulder and leaves.

 

-

 

"Do you know what time it is?" Chanyeol grumbles the next morning, leaning against the open door and peering at Jongin through his dark-rimmed glasses. "Let me tell you. It's seven. You know I don't have class until after noon on Fridays."

"But I do," Jongin says, slipping around Chanyeol and into the apartment. "In a hour. And I wanted to see you."

Chanyeol scratches the back of his neck, pleased by that despite how much he'd like to just crawl back into bed and sleep. He shuts the door and follows Jongin inside, rubbing his hands down his bare arms. He's only in a pair of boxer briefs and he should probably put on a shirt or something, but Jongin looks him up and down, all appraisingly, and flushes deep, so Chanyeol thinks he'll put up with the slight morning cold for awhile.

"I, um, brought some donuts," Jongin says, holding up the plastic bag in his hand as he drops his backpack onto the couch and then heads to the kitchen like he lives there. Chanyeol pushes that away because he doesn't have time or energy to think about how much he would like it if they lived together. "Is Jongdae home?" Jongin asks.

Chanyeol shakes his head. His bedroom door was wide open when Chanyeol shuffled past earlier and his room is empty which means he never came home that night. "Probably stayed over at Sunyoung’s."

"Good," Jongin says, and then turns around to catch Chanyeol's mouth in a kiss. Chanyeol gasps, surprised, but quickly winds his arms around Jongin’s waist to pull him in closer. Of course that’s when Jongin draws away, nose wrinkling as he says, “Gross, haven’t you brushed your teeth?”

“Hey, you’re the one who woke me up at seven in the morning just to eat donuts,” Chanyeol grumbles, trying to pull Jongin close again. Jongin just laughs, pushes at his chest, and Chanyeol reluctantly lets go.

“Put on a shirt, too!” Jongin hollers after him, but Chanyeol chooses to ignore that request. He rather enjoys the way Jongin will undoubtedly stare at him more, only to blush prettily in embarrassment when Chanyeol catches him looking.

By the time he’s freshened up, Jongin’s put the donuts onto a plate in the middle of the kitchen counter and filled two glasses with orange juice. He hands one to Chanyeol, who takes it with a smile but leans across the counter to kiss him, first.

“Better?” he asks, grabbing a bear claw from the pile and walking over to the small kitchen table he and Jongdae managed to snag from one of Jongdae’s neighbors who was looking to toss it out. One of the feet wiggles too much and they prop it up with some old books, but it makes due for their broke-ass college lifestyle. He slides into a chair and takes a bite from his donut.

“Much,” Jongin says with a smile. He leans against the counter and sips idly at his juice. After a few minutes of silence, he says, “I tried to call you last night but I think you must’ve gone to bed.”

Chanyeol nods slowly. He doesn’t remember any calls. “Probably. I really was tired.” Tired of thinking about his relationship with Jongin, about things he can’t have.

“It’s okay,” Jongin says. “I just...wanted to talk about something.”

“Oh?” Chanyeol says around a mouthful.

“Yeah.” Jongin sets his glass back onto the counter and then walks the few steps over to Chanyeol, who expects him to sit down with him. Instead Jongin climbs onto the chair he’s already in, straddling his lap and linking his hands around Chanyeol’s neck. Chanyeol gasps, his hands automatically finding Jongin’s waist, and he shifts a bit to get more comfortable under Jongin’s added weight. He kind of wishes he’d put clothes now, especially with the Jongin is staring so intensely at him.

Jongin’s wearing a loose-fitted tank top with a neck that scoops a bit too low and Chanyeol always frowns at them because he doesn’t like how it shows off so much skin. He’s sure Jongin wears them on purpose because of that, especially when they’re together, but he also knows Jongin hates the heat, and the weather’s been unrelenting these days. The hickey Chanyeol left on his neck isn’t visible at all, and he wonders unhappily if Jongin covered it up with makeup again. Brows furrowing, Chanyeol runs his hands along Jongin’s sides, and slowly lifts up the hem of his shirt to peek underneath.

His name is mostly faded from Jongin’s skin, but that mark he’d left there is still bruised wonderfully dark. He brushes his fingers across it and Jongin sighs, his hands behind Chanyeol’s neck pressing tight against his nape.

“Actually that,” Jongin says, “that’s sort of what I wanted to talk to you about.”

“This is about yesterday,” Chanyeol says, trying to keep the panic out of his voice.

“Yes,” Jongin says, “Kind of. I guess.” He licks his lips, slow, as he thinks, and Chanyeol doesn’t push him. His heart is beating loudly in his ears as he waits. He’s not entirely sure if this is a conversation he even wants to have. “It’s just…” Jongin is flushing now, and he looks about as uncomfortable talking about this as Chanyeol feels. “You really like doing that, don’t you?”

Uncertain, Chanyeol rubs circles into Jongin’s skin just underneath his shirt. “I guess I do,” he murmurs, eventually, and it’s the understatement of the year.

Jongin seems to think so, too. He quirks an eyebrow in amusement, but he thankfully doesn’t tease. “It’s cool,” he says, “it’s not like I don’t like it, you know.” He flushes deeper. “Like we’ve all got our kinks.”

Chanyeol knows that’s true. That Jongin likes it when he pulls on his hair or touches his neck softly as they make out. He’s learned that Jongin likes it when Chanyeol marks him like he has recently, because of the way his breathing quickens and he kisses Chanyeol more fiercely afterward, even from the way he blushes deeply when Chanyeol presses into the marks days later.

"I'm just wondering," Jongin says, "if there's something more to it than that. You've been acting a little...off lately, and after last night--"

"Does it bother you?" Chanyeol blurts out, feeling the sudden burning desire to know for real, if Chanyeol's strange fascination with marking him is actually upsetting Jongin. Because that's the last thing he wants, if it is.

"No," Jongin says firmly. "I just told you. I like it. When we're together, like this. It's okay." He smiles softly, reassuringly, and his fingers gently play with the short hairs along the back of Chanyeol's neck. "It's just, when we're in public...we can't explain that away."

Chanyeol has to force the words on the tip of his tongue down. That yes, they could, if only Jongin wanted to make their relationship known. It’s clear that he doesn't, though, or else he would say as much, and that's what hurts Chanyeol the most. But that's all on him. He's the one who can't deal with having a secret boyfriend, he's the one who can't push the unease away and focus on the good things about it. Jongin is perfectly fine the way things are. It's just Chanyeol who's a mess.

So he doesn't bring it up. Instead he just laughs and slides his hands up under Jongin's shirt and up his back. "All right," he says. "I'll be more careful. As long as you stop staring at me in public with that terribly intense look you get, like you wanna eat me."

Jongin squawks, turning red, and exclaims, "I don't do that!"

"I mean, I know I'm pretty irresistible but if you want this whole thing to stay secret, you're gonna have to work on that look," Chanyeol continues, the amusement he gets from Jongin's mortified face almost enough to mask his pain.

Jongin drops his head into Chanyeol's shoulder and grumbles incoherently into his skin, his hot breath sending shivers down Chanyeol's spine. Grinning, Chanyeol leans into whisper next to his ear, "Though I do like that look a lot."

A rumbling laugh falls from Jongin's lips and then he's pulling back, cupping Chanyeol's face in his hands and kissing him soundly on the mouth. Chanyeol's lips stretch into a wider grin as he reciprocates, tasting the sweetness of juice from Jongin's mouth and the sugaryness of his own half-eaten donut, and this, he thinks, this is okay. It's not entirely what Chanyeol wants, but when they're like this, it's easier to forget everything else. Jongin is warm and solid in his arms, his mouth slick with heat, and the tiny whimpering noises he makes fill Chanyeol's heart to the brim, and it's enough, he thinks, for now.

Jongin tries to pull Chanyeol in even closer, his kisses getting almost desperate, and there’s only so much space they have sitting like this on a chair, but Chanyeol likes it. Really likes it, how Jongin seems to want to mold their bodies into one. Chanyeol slides a hand down to Jongin’s ass, drags him forward, and the roughness of his jeans rub a little unpleasantly along Chanyeol’s bare thighs. But then Jongin is groaning, and that sound is wonderful, startling a gasp from Chanyeol as they grind against each other, slow and unrushed, even though Jongin has to be at class in less than half an hour.

Clearly that seems to be the last thing on Jongin’s mind right now and Chanyeol’s not really one for ruining a good thing, so he keeps quiet and focuses on Jongin in his lap, the building pressure in the pit of his stomach. And he’s so wrapped up in it, that it isn’t until Jongdae’s unmistakable voice exclaims, “Whoa,” does Chanyeol feel like someone just dumped a bucket of freezing cold water all over him with the way Jongin yanks backwards immediately like Chanyeol is diseased.

He can’t really get that far without falling straight off of Chanyeol’s lap and probably hitting his head on the table on the way to the floor, and Chanyeol is holding onto him so tight that Jongin can barely move anyway. He just leans as far back as possible, eyes impossibly wide and the flush of pleasure on his skin now deepening with horror.

Chanyeol wants to throw Jongdae out the door and lock it and never let him back inside, especially when he turns to find his roommate with this shark-like grin across his face, like he knew about this all along.

“So, good morning, I take it,” Jongdae says. Jongdae has obvious sex hair and there’s lipstick on the collar of his shirt, and Chanyeol could say something scathing back, but he’s more worried about how unhappy Jongin looks to care. He rubs his hand soothingly down Jongin’s back, and that seems to be enough to get him to jolt out of his stupor.

He blushes in embarrassment and scrambles off Chanyeol’s lap. “I-I should go,” Jongin says, not looking at either of them. “I have, uh, class. I have class.”

He’s running around Jongdae toward the door, and Chanyeol follows quickly after, punching Jongdae’s shoulder as he passes him just to wipe the grin off his face. Jongin’s struggling to get his shoes back on and Chanyeol picks his backpack up from the couch, walks over and grabs him by the shoulders.

“Hey, relax,” he says, a little worried about Jongin’s behavior. A little hurt, too, because Jongin is bolting out of here like he can’t believe he’s been seen making out with Chanyeol at all. But he pushes that away though, because it’s not important right now, forces Jongin to look up at him. He smiles. “Hey, it’s just Jongdae. It’s no big deal.” When Jongin gnaws at his lower lip and doesn’t answer, looking unsettled, Chanyeol slides his hands down his arms gently and adds with as much strength as he can muster, “I’ll tell him not to tell anyone.”

Jongin looks at him, really looks at him, like he’s trying to read Chanyeol’s mind through his eyes. It makes Chanyeol feel a little vulnerable, but he doesn’t look away, at least not until Jongin sighs, the tension leaving his body and he steps in close to Chanyeol and presses his forehead against his chest. “Thanks,” he says softly, and Chanyeol just hugs him.

“No problem,” he replies as cheerfully as he can. “And hey, you should come over tonight after your classes. Jongdae’s going home for the weekend, thankfully,” Jongin laughs against him at that, “and, I don’t know, we can hang out, order pizza and watch a movie or something.”

“All right,” Jongin says, and Chanyeol can feel his lips stretch into a smile. He pulls away, takes his backpack from Chanyeol and slides it onto his shoulders. “I’ll see you later then.”

Chanyeol grins, nodding, and smacks his ass as he walks out the door. Jongin yelps and throws him a glare, but then he laughs, that dumb looking one he does sometimes that has his eyes curving and all his teeth showing, and Chanyeol watches until he disappears around the corner with a final wave.

With a deep sigh, he shuts the door and runs a hand through his hair, and turns to find Jongdae standing behind him, eyebrows raised.

“So,” he says, drawing the sound out to be obnoxious.

“Yes, we’re together. Yes, we’ve kept it a secret. It’s been a few months, and can you please not tell anyone, Jongin doesn’t want people to know,” Chanyeol says, deadpan. He passes by Jongdae back to the kitchen. He needs to stuff his face with the rest of the donuts Jongin brought offer. A sugar-induced coma seems like a good idea right now.

“Do you want it to be a secret?” Jongdae says. “I’m not gonna pretend I didn’t hear anything just now, and even though you didn’t say it out loud, I could tell.”

“It’s not important.”

“Of course it’s important!” Jongdae says, as Chanyeol grabs the entire plate of donuts and heads back to his room.

Chanyeol really doesn’t want to talk about it, least of all to Jongdae. “You know you have lipstick on your shirt,” he says, a weak attempt at a distraction. It’s enough for Jongdae to look down, and that’s when Chanyeol slips into his room. “Just don’t tell anyone, okay?” he adds, and Jongdae frowns at him and doesn’t say anything, but Chanyeol knows he won’t. “Thanks,” he says, offering his friend a small smile before he shuts the door behind him.

 

-

 

There are few things that Chanyeol likes more than spending an evening with Jongin leaning against him, head resting on his shoulder, hands intertwined together in Jongin's lap. They're halfway through Sinister and Jongin, for all his love of scary films, still jumps at something unexpected, or clutches Chanyeol's hand a little tighter when he's spooked. It's adorable, to say the least, and Chanyeol welcomes it, a clear and easy distraction from everything else tumbling around in his brain.

He's seen this movie already so he's only vaguely paying attention to the screen, his eyes on Jongin instead. Face illuminated by the flashes of light from the television because Jongin insists there's no point in watching scary movies unless it's in the dark. He takes to rubbing his thumb over Jongin's knuckles, and Jongin presses his cheek against his shoulder, a tiny smile playing at his lips.

He glances up at him, then, and asks with amusement, "Are you even watching?"

"Of course I am," Chanyeol says, pretending mock offense. "Look, pretty sure he's gonna die right about now."

Jongin jumps, burying his face into the crook of Chanyeol's neck while Chanyeol laughs. Chanyeol nudges him, points toward the screen, "Wait, look, you have to watch this, ohhhh."

"Stop!" Jongin hisses, pulling his hand from Chanyeol’s to weakly punch him in the chest.

"Why do you insist on watching these movies when you get scared?” Chanyeol asks, though he’s definitely not complaining with the way Jongin is clinging to him now. An arm of his tank top has slid down his left shoulder, showing off more skin than it covers up, and despite the darkness i the room, Chanyeol can just make out the beginnings of an intense bruise along Jongin’s ribs. He grins a little to himself, remembering how it’d really taken them two tries to actually start watching the movie because Jongin’s tiny, pleased noises were too addictive, and Chaneyol didn’t want to stop until he’d had a chance to mark him again, somewhere where Jongin wouldn’t have to cover it up with makeup.

Jongin had laughed a little breathlessly afterward, muttering, “You’re so weird,” as he threaded his hands through Chanyeol’s hair, but when Chanyeol traced his tongue over the bite mark, Jongin moaned happily.

Now he can wrap his arm around Jongin’s waist and gently brush his fingers over that spot through his shirt and Jongin shudders his his arms. “I'm not scared!” Jongin insists then, and it takes a moment for Chanyeol to remember what they’re even talking about, “I'm just...easily startled.”

Chanyeol bites back his laugh. “Suuuure,” he says instead. He rubs his thumb over the mark once more before he slowly pulls himself away from Jongin’s grasp and to his feet. “Do you want something more to drink?” he asks, grabbing their empty cans of beer and bowl of popcorn.

Jongin looks up at him with a horrified expression like he can’t believe Chanyeol is leaving him alone to watch this movie. Chanyeol smiles, ruffles his hair and says, “Scream if you need me,” and Jongin’s face twists into a half-glare, half-pout, which Chanyeol also finds absolutely adorable.

He dumps the cans into the empty bowl and cradles it in his arms as he heads to the kitchen, catching Jongin pulling his legs up to his chest and watching the movie from between the safety of his fingers. Way too cute, Chanyeol thinks fondly, as he tosses the cans into the recycle bin and the bowl into the sink. He grabs another two cans from the fridge, and a bag of the sour cream and onion chips Jongin likes from the cupboard. They’re actually Jongdae’s but Chanyeol doesn’t care, even if Jongdae might grumble at him for eating all his food when he comes back on Sunday.

He hands the bag to Jongin who takes it happily, dropping his legs into a cross-legged position on the couch and placing the bag in his lap. Jongin ends up spilling more chips than eating them, falling out of his hands whenever he jumps, but at least it’s food and not a beer in his hand, like the one time Junmyeon was over and they all watched the Grudge and he spilled his drink everywhere. The couch smelled like beer for almost a week.

Thankfully it isn’t long until the movie ends, and Jongin is grumbling under his breath because he can’t decide if that was good or terrible. He munches on a handful of chips and Chanyeol just looks at him, amused, then gets up to quickly turn the light back on, squinting a bit at the sudden brightness. He flops back onto the couch, stretching out his legs to rest his feet upon the coffee table. He raises his arms over his head, rolls his neck from side to side and then drops his arms with a sigh into his lap.

“What do you want to do now?” he asks, nudging Jongin. It’s barely past midnight. They could probably watch another movie, play Assassin’s Creed or something. He’s been meaning to get Jongin to try Guitar Hero but Jongin scoffs at it and says it’s not a real video game, but Chanyeol knows from Yixing it's because he sucks at it.

Jongin tosses the bag of chips onto the coffee table and brushes the crumbs off from his shirt and jeans with a frown. Before Chanyeol can get up and pull out the PS3, Jongin is scooting back in close to him, linking their arms together and resting his head against his shoulder. Chanyeol smiles, leaning into him as Jongin slides his hand up from Chanyeol’s knee to his thigh.

“I have a few ideas,” Jongin says, voice suddenly low. His fingers trace the inseam of Chanyeol’s jeans. “You’re sure Jongdae went home, right? He isn’t gonna walk in on us again?”

Chanyeol laughs, tries not to remember the way Jongin bolted out of the apartment that morning, tries not to think of what he’d do if Jongdae did walk in on them doing something more than just kissing. “Unless his parents kicked him out because he’s failing chem, I doubt it.”

Jongin doesn’t seem to hear his comment, his gaze trained on his fingers which Chanyeol finds are more distracting by the minute, and adds, “I’m glad he seems to not have told anyone...At least I haven’t gotten any messages from Sehun or Baekhyun yet so…”

“He might be an idiot but he’s not a dick,” Chanyeol says, and he has to force himself not to sound annoyed. “I told him not to tell anyone. He won’t.”

“I know that,” Jongin says quietly, and he sounds so small all of sudden, Chanyeol wants to pull him even closer except the things he’s saying, what he’s implying, only makes anger bubble up under Chanyeol’s skin. “But, I’m--”

“But what?” Chanyeol snaps, louder than he meant to be. He doesn’t want to fight with Jongin but it’s like the words are coming out of his mouth without his consent, now. “What’d be so bad if he did tell them?”

Jongin pulls away from him slowly, drawing his arm out from Chanyeol’s and looking up at him with his brows furrowed. “What’s wrong?” he asks, cautiously, and Chanyeol feels terrible because he’s never raised his voice to Jongin like this. “I’ve been wondering, it’s like something’s been on your mind all night. Like you barely even watched the movie, you didn’t make any of your usual comments about the overacting or anything.”

Chanyeol lets out a frustrated sigh, pushes a hand through his hair and looks somewhere just above Jongin’s shoulder. He doesn’t think he can look at him directly when he says this. “I can’t...I don’t think I can do this anymore, Jongin.”

There’s a sharp intake of breath, and when Chanyeol glances at him, Jongin is staring at him, wide-eyed, like what Chanyeol said is more terrifying than the movie they just watched. “What?” he asks. He’s twisting the fabric of his tank top in his fists and he does that terrible thing where he stares at Chanyeol so intently Chanyeol can’t look away.

“This, this thing between us,” Chanyeol says, waving a hand in the air between them frantically like that will explain more than he can with words. “I don’t think I can do it anymore.” Jongin’s expression is slipping and slipping, into something less like horror and more like heartbreak and Chanyeol is quick to shake his head, realizing that what he’s saying sounds like he wants to break up and that’s the furthest thing from his mind. “No! No, I mean, keeping everything a secret. Is there a reason you don’t want people to know we’re dating? Are you ashamed or something?”

"What?! No!" Jongin exclaims, lurching backwards like Chanyeol’s words physically assaulted him. "No, Chanyeol, how can you even say that?"

"Well, nothing else really makes any sense," Chanyeol says. The anger is fading into confusion, and he scratches his fingernails down his arms, dropping his gaze to the sudden foot of space between them.

"I thought you were okay with it being a secret," Jongin whispers.

"It's been three months, Jongin," Chanyeol says, defeated. He thought he could talk about this but he's not sure if he can without getting angry again. He looks up at Jongin then, and his chest tightens like someone is stepping on him, trying to squeeze the air out his lungs. Jongin looks so distraught, eyes sadder than he's ever seen them, not even after Monsters Inc. when Jongin cried for ten minutes into Chanyeol’s shoulder. He wonders how he must look right now, unhappy and frustrated, and sighs. "I'm sorry. Nevermind. I don't want to talk about this anymore."

He’s halfway off the couch when Jongin leans over quickly and catches his wrist. "Chanyeol," he says, maybe pleads, pleads for Chanyeol not to be a coward, to just tell him what's on his mind. Except Chanyeol hates that Jongin can't tell, that it isn't obvious already from what he's said. That Chanyeol has to spell it out for him. That Jongin can't just say, it’s okay, we don't have to hide it anymore.

Jongin does none of those things, just looks up at Chanyeol through his lashes, lower lip tucked into his mouth, and Chanyeol just shakes his head and twists his hand out of Jongin’s grip.

"I think I’m just gonna go to bed," he says quietly. At the immediate sound of protest Jongin makes, he forces out a small laugh and reaches out to ruffle Jongin’s hair. He swallows down the thickness in his throat and adds, "It's okay. We’re okay. I just..I need to think."

Jongin doesn't look convinced, but slowly he nods. He doesn’t look like he wants to leave, rather like he wants to attach himself to Chanyeol and follow him into bed, but eventually he gets to his feet. He hesitates for a tiny moment before leaning in and pressing a shaky kiss to Chanyeol’s cheek. Chanyeol’s heart drops to his knees, but he manages to offer Jongin a small smile that he knows doesn’t quite meet his eyes.

"I'll see you tomorrow," Jongin says firmly, a promise, telling Chanyeol he has no choice in the matter. He leaves before Chanyeol can say anything, a quick wave and smile over his shoulder that’s more sad than anything else, and Chanyeol spends the rest of the night in bed, unable to sleep, the ghost of Jongin’s miserable kiss lingering on his skin.

 

-


Jongin keeps his word. Thankfully he waits until after noon to come pounding on Chanyeol’s door, startling Chanyeol who had spent most of his morning in an unhappy curled up ball on his couch, staring at his phone and contemplating to call Jongin and apologize.

“Let’s go have lunch,” he says when Chanyeol opens the door for him, and Chanyeol nods slowly because Jongin doesn’t look upset like he had the night before. He’s smiling, even though the dark circles under his eyes tell Chanyeol he spent most of his night unable to sleep, too. “Please put on a different shirt, though, first.” Jongin wrinkles his nose at Chanyeol’s clothing, and Chanyeol snorts, glancing down at the shirt he’d thrown on after his shower, that ugly tattered one Jongin hates.

“Fine, fine,” he says and Jongin follows him into the apartment and to his room, nixing the shirts that Chanyeol picks up from the floor until he finally yanks a blue button-up from the closet and tosses it into Chanyeol’s face. “Jesus, it’s just lunch, not a fancy date or something,” Chanyeol grumbles, but Jongin shrugs, and looks away with a tiny frown that Chanyeol doesn’t understand. He combs his fingers through his hair and pushes on his glasses because he’s too tired to wear contacts.

“Let’s go,” he says when he’s ready, slipping his wallet and phone into the back pocket of his jeans. Jongin smiles at him then and takes his hand, linking their fingers together, and Chanyeol stares down at their hands for a second in surprise. Is Jongin going to pretend like last night never happened, or is this his way of showing him that things are all right, for now?

Either way, Chanyeol welcomes the warmth of his hand in his, and he squeezes back gently as he locks up and leads the way to the elevator.

“We’re meeting Sehun and Lu Han at the ramyeon place,” Jongin says once inside. He leans his head against Chanyeol’s shoulder. “Is that okay?”

Chanyeol nods. He’s glad to hear that, actually. After last night he’s not so sure how spending time alone with Jongin would be, and he’d much rather spend time together in a group, just to be safe. He still has so many thoughts and emotions he needs to work out. Still, he says, “About last night.”

“We can talk about it later,” Jongin cuts in before Chanyeol can say much more. “For now, let’s just hurry. I’m starving.” He pouts up at Chanyeol and pats his stomach and Chanyeol laughs, the first real one in what feels like days, and it makes Jongin grin widely at him, too.

“Okay, okay,” he chuckles, “leave the serious stuff for later.”

Jongin makes a small noise of consent as the elevator drops onto the first floor and the doors open with a ding. Chanyeol lets go of Jongin’s hand right away, even though there’s no one on the other side of the doors, and he’s a little surprised because Jongin is usually quick about drawing away from Chanyeol so as to not give anyone who might be around the wrong impression. Chanyeol shoves his hands into his pockets, his hand palm still warm from Jongin’s touch, and tries not to focus on why Jongin stands closer to him than normal, shoulders brushing together as they walk down the streets.

He’s glad when they finally arrive at the small restaurant, glad to find not only Sehun and Lu Han, but also Yifan and Kyungsoo waiting for them in the back corner. Lu Han waves them over excitedly and Chanyeol slides into the empty seat on Yifan’s left. Jongin sits down across from him, and Chanyeol fixes his gaze on the menu and not on the way Jongin instantly hooks his ankle around his.

A waitress stops by, hands Jongin and Chanyeol glasses of water as the others have already gotten theirs, and then stop so take everyone’s orders. Chanyeol wishes he could keep his menu just so there’s something for him to look at, because otherwise every time he glances up Jongin is there, staring back at him. He quickly focuses in on Yifan’s conversation with Lu Han, something about a class they have together that Chanyeol knows nothing about, but it’s enough to distract him.

Jongin leans around Kyungsoo to talk to Sehun on his other side, resting his elbow on the table despite Kyungsoo’s protests. The white v-neck he’s wearing stretches across his back and it’s thin enough that it’s practically see-through and Chanyeol really needs to look somewhere else. And it’s not like he’s trying to stare at Jongin, because he’s really trying to ignore him, but the more he tries to do that, the more he ends up being pulled straight back to Jongin eventually, like Jongin is the other half of a magnet that only connects the two of them. That thought only makes Chanyeol heart ache, a bit, and he pushes a hand through his hair with a frustrated sigh. Their food couldn’t come any sooner, he thinks, a big bowl of ramyeon is just about what he needs now. Maybe a beer, too.

“Hey,” Sehun says, waving a hand in front of Chanyeol’s face to get his attention. “What did you guys do last night? Jongin said he was over at your place yesterday.”

Chanyeol glances at Jongin in surprise, and is more amazed to find Jongin flushing slightly. He knows Jongin usually tells Sehun he’s going to the library, or going home to visit his family instead of telling him he’s hanging out with Chanyeol. He expected the same sort of excuse for last night, but apparently Jongin didn’t have one. “Oh, we watched Sinister,” he says slowly, then with another glance at Jongin’s flushed face, he smirks and continues, “Jongin practically cried in fright.”

Jongin’s head snaps up while Sehun snorts in laughter. “I did not!” he exclaims, and if possible, he turns even redder. This, Chanyeol thinks, he can do, an amused laugh bubbling out of him and pushing aside all the unease he’s been feeling for days. Teasing Jongin is something he greatly enjoys.

“He almost wouldn’t let me leave the room he was so scared,” Chanyeol adds, and Kyungsoo snickers beside Jongin, who shoots him a slightly betrayed look.

“Shut up,” Jongin hisses, and he leans over the table to smack Chanyeol in the arm, and Chanyeol’s laugh cuts off abruptly because the collar of Jongin’s shirt hangs low and gives Chanyeol the perfect view of his chest, of that bruise he’d left on him yesterday that he hasn’t even had a chance to look at again. His mouth goes dry and he’s hit with the itch to mark him more; despite all the uncertainty he’s felt lately, thatdesire hasn’t once gone away.

He pushes that down quickly though because now is not the time nor place to think about it, and he forces out a laugh, punches Jongin lightly in the shoulder in retaliation. Jongin is laughing, too, now, as he settles back into his seat, even as Sehun calls him a scaredy-cat loudly so probably the whole restaurant could hear.

“He’s not as bad as Junmyeon, though,” Chanyeol says, smiles at Jongin, who returns it easily, and once again hooks their ankles together under the table. Jongin does things like that occasionally when they’re out with friends, holding hands under the table if they’re sitting next to each other, brushing his fingers along the back of Chanyeol’s neck when he passes by him, little things that always tell Chanyeol how much Jongin thinks about him, about them together, but nowadays those tiny moments he used to crave so much make his stomach rumble unpleasantly. They wouldn’t have to hide their hands under a table if everyone knew. They wouldn’t have to touch each other so subtly. It would be nice, he thinks, to press a kiss to Jongin’s forehead when he wanted, and not have to wait until they were alone.

But that, Chanyeol realizes, is also something to think about later. For now, he can enjoy the way Jongin steals glances at him and blushes whenever Chanyeol catches him looking.

Their food arrives shortly after that, and Chanyeol busies himself with eating which is definitely safe and not going to make him think about things he can’t change. He half-listens to Yifan talking to Kyungsoo about a project for their art class, refraining from commenting back on how Yifan thinks his piece is the best he’s done yet, and ignores the occasional high-pitched laughter from Jongin that always makes his heart beat a little faster.

He can’t, however, ignore Jongin when Sehun says, loudly, “When’s the last time you got laid, seriously?”

Chanyeol chokes on his noodles and Yifan quickly reaches over to pat his back, but Chanyeol doesn’t feel all that better even when he can breathe properly again. Jongin glances at him for one brief second then turns and glares at Sehun, who looks unfazed and adds, “Seriously, you’ve been weird lately. And I haven’t seen any inappropriately placed hickeys lately either.”

Jongin turns a deep, deep red and discreetly touches his chest where Chanyeol left that mark yesterday. Unfortunately, he’s not as inconspicuous as he wants to be, because Sehun’s eyes widen and he reaches around to try and yank on Jongin’s shirt.

“Wait! You do, don’t you!” he exclaims. “I knew that wasn’t a curling iron burn! Are you fucking seeing someone and you haven’t told me?!”

Jongin quickly fights Sehun off him, and it helps that Kyungsoo is sitting between them, looking half amused and half disturbed. He seems to take pity on Jongin though, grabbing one of Sehun’s arms and twisting him away.

“It’s none of your business whether I am or not,” Jongin mumbles, which surprises Chanyeol because he fully expected Jongin to flat-out deny it.

“I’m your best friend,” Sehun says and he pouts, like Jongin has terribly wronged him. “You’re hiding shit from me!”

Jongin just shakes his head, reaches around Kyungsoo and pokes Sehun in the forehead. “You know how I like to keep things that are important to me to myself, okay?” he says easily, but the words hit Chanyeol in the chest like bullets. “I’ll tell you when I’m ready.” He flushes. “If there’s anything to tell.”

And he turns away quickly, picking up his chopsticks and stuffing his mouth with food to prevent himself from speaking about this anymore. Sehun doesn’t look all that pleased with this answer, but he doesn’t press, either, turning to whine at Yifan about how Jongin is a terrible friend. Lu Han laughs at him while Jongin pretends not to hear, and Chanyeol is starting to tune everyone out because all he can think about is what Jongin just said.

He has known that about Jongin from the beginning, really, how Jongin is a little private and likes his space. How Jongin never likes it when his friends are too nosy, too eager to pick apart every aspect of his life. While Chanyeol doesn’t mind talking about a date he went on with Jinri or that time Zitao gave him a blowjob at a party off-campus, Jongin is the type of person to keep those sorts of things to himself. Not necessarily because he’s embarrassed, but because that’s just how he is.

Maybe he’s forgotten all of that, in the haze of his own unhappiness and anger. Jongin, he realizes, must have his reasons for wanting to keep his relationship with Chanyeol a secret, much like Chanyeol has his reasons for wanting to make it public.

He’s pulled from his thoughts as Jongin bumps his ankle with his, and he looks up to see Jongin staring at him, a little concerned. Chanyeol smiles at him genuinely, even though his mind is reeling, and as Jongin grins back, suddenly much more happier since Sehun brought up the stupid topic, Chanyeol wonders if those important things that Jongin likes to keep to himself include something as important as a boyfriend.

 

-

 

After lunch, Jongin latches himself to Kyungsoo, looking completely prepared to head back up to the dorms, but Chanyeol doesn’t want that. His mind is still buzzing and he really needs to talk to Jongin, really talk to Jongin. He doesn’t think he’s going to feel any better until he does.

So he grabs Jongin’s elbow and tugs him away from Kyungsoo, and at Jongin’s raised brows, mouth dropping open in surprise, Chanyeol slides his arm around Jongin’s shoulders and says, “I need to borrow him for awhile. We have to talk about something.”

He glances down in time to see Jongin bite his lower lip into his mouth, expression suddenly clouded, and it’s obvious he knows what Chanyeol means. Kyungsoo gives the two of them searching look but then shrugs.

“Okay,” he says, “Jongin, you can stop by later if you want help with your finance homework.”

"Thanks," Jongin says, offering everyone a wave before ducking out from under Chanyeol's arm.

"Come on," Chanyeol says, and he leads the way in the opposite direction, back toward his apartment. They walk in silence. A few times it looks like Jongin wants to say something, but instead he ends up just pressing his lips together into a thin line, his brows furrowing in frustration. Chanyeol really, really wants to reach out and hold his hand, more for comfort than for anything else, because the same unease that Jongin must be feeling is spreading throughout his body, too.

Thankfully his apartment isn't too far away, and in the empty elevator, Chanyeol slides his hand down Jongin's arm until he's able to slip his hand into Jongin's. "Don't look so scared," he says, nudging him slightly.

"I'm not," Jongin says, quick to defend, and Chanyeol laughs. He's probably still a little upset about what he said over lunch. "Besides, you look pretty scared, too."

Chanyeol doesn't want to deny it, because he is, a little. He's not sure how this conversation is going to go. "Maybe," he says softly, as the elevator dings onto the fourth floor. Chanyeol doesn't let his hand go, and Jongin doesn't either, and it's nice, to just walk down the hall with Jongin's hand in his. He fishes his keys out of his pocket and lets them in, and they slip off their shoes in silence. In the empty apartment, away from everyone, the tension suddenly feels so overwhelming that Chanyeol thinks he might suffocate.

And the easiest thing to do, to distract him, is to tug Jongin close, right there in the doorway, and kiss him.

Jongin makes a soft, startled sound, but he doesn't push him away. Instead he relaxes considerably, body falling lax in Chanyeol's arms as he wraps his own around Chanyeol's back and clutches onto his shirt. Chanyeol kicks the door shut quickly and turns, Jongin's hips in his hands, and presses him up against it when it's closed. It feels like ages since they've made out like this, even though it's barely been a day, but with everything that's been on his mind for the past fifteen hours, it sure feels longer.

Chanyeol pulls back first, breathing in quick puffs of air against Jongin's lips, and he strokes his fingers along Jongin's sides. "I'm really sorry about yesterday," he finally manages to say. "I don't want to argue with you."

"I don't either," Jongin says softly. His eyes are bright and there's a pretty blush already working its way onto his cheeks and Chanyeol doesn't want to let him go, ever.

"I've just been thinking about a lot of things," Chanyeol continues. "And maybe I am a little afraid of what'll happen when I tell you."

"Who's the scaredy-cat now, then?" Jongin teases, poking Chanyeol's stomach, a cheeky grin tugging at his lips.

"I'm still not as bad as you," Chanyeol retorts, and then he steps back, laughing at Jongin's protest to pull him close again. "I don't want to talk about it in the doorway. Come on." He pulls Jongin with him to his room, shutting the door behind them even though Jongdae isn't home. He wouldn't be surprised if Jongdae came back earlier than expected.

Jongin immediately slides onto the bed, stretching his legs out and looking so wonderfully at home it pulls a little at Chanyeol's heartstrings. Chanyeol joins him without needing to be prompted, flopping down next to him on his stomach and reaching over to brush Jongin's hair from his face.

"You're not breaking up with me, are you?" Jongin suddenly blurts out. A second later, he looks ashamed at himself, slapping both hands over his mouth as his eyes widen in horror.

Chanyeol can't help it; he laughs, rolling over onto his side, and only laughs harder when Jongin smacks him repeatedly in the arm. "I'm sorry!" he gasps, grabbing Jongin's hands to stop his assault. "I just can't believe you thought I would break up with you."

"I was worried, okay?" Jongin exclaims, furious. "What you said last night--"

"I just kissed you into my front door."

"But--"

Chanyeol stops Jongin from saying anything more with another kiss, pulling him into his chest and gently licking his way into his mouth. Jongin sighs, and it's clear he's a little uncertain in the way he kisses back hesitantly now, so Chanyeol retreats and meets his gaze. "I'm not breaking up with you, Jongin," he says firmly. "That's the last thing I want."

Jongin stares back at him for what feels like a very long time, but is probably just a few seconds. Then he nods, his face breaking out into a big, happy grin, and he reaches between them to clutch onto Chanyeol's hand. "Then what is this about?" he asks softly.

Chanyeol licks his lips and takes a deep breath. “What you said during lunch, about keeping things important to yourself...Is that why you’re keeping us a secret?”

Jongin stares at him for a few moments, like he’s trying to figure out just how upset or angry Chanyeol is. He squeezes his hand a bit for reassurance, which seems to be exactly what Jongin needs before he nods slowly. “Yes,” he whispers.

All the tension in Chanyeol’s body seems to fade away at that one word, and he lets out a soft sigh of relief. This isn’t as terrible as everything he’s been thinking. “That’s all, really?” he asks. “I’ve been going insane wondering if there was something else wrong.”

“No, there’s nothing wrong,” Jongin says quickly and Chanyeol must still look a little unsure because Jongin smiles and adds, “Really.” He sighs then, too, brows furrowing a bit as he seems to figure out the best way to say what he wants to. Chanyeol doesn’t push him, just watches his face, taking in the lines in his forehead, the way his lower lip is a little swollen from biting down against it. When he finds Jongin’s gaze again, Jongin lets out a breath and continues. “I guess, thinking about it now, it might’ve been me just being selfish. I’m sorry I wasn’t clearer about it, Chanyeol. It was just nice having you to myself, that no one had to know, that no one was being nosy or asking about us or any of that stuff.” He lets out a tiny laugh and blushes. “I liked not having to share you with anyone.”

Warmth bubbles pleasantly in Chanyeol’s stomach and spreads out throughout his body as Jongin turns his head away in embarrassment. Chaneyol thinks he understands now, as Jongin’s words replay over and over in his head. Because essentially, isn’t that what he wants, too? Not to share Jongin? His way of wanting to do that, he realizes, has just been the opposite.

Jongin seems to catch what he’s thinking because he smiles, releasing his hand to run his fingers along the buttons of Chanyeol’s shirt, teasing in popping them open. “It’s like the way you...you show it, with...the marking and stuff. It’s so people would know that I’m yours, right?” He glances up at Chanyeol as he says this and Chanyeol swallows, nods. Jongin’s smile widens. “For me,” he says, “keeping you to myself, not letting anyone know, it’s the same thing. Keeping this just between us, for awhile, it felt right to me.”

“I understand,” Chanyeol replies, and he does, everything so much clearer now. “You should’ve just told me all that though.” He pouts.

Jongin laughs, the sound bright and beautiful in the silent room. He punches Chanyeol gently in the chest with his free hand and says, “Hey, I could say the same about you. Why didn’t you tell me you didn’t want to keep this all a secret anymore?”

“Was I being obvious?” he asks.

“What you said last night made it really clear,” Jongin answers with a tiny chuckle. “I’d been wondering though, for awhile.”

“I wanted to tell you yesterday but I...just couldn’t.”

Jongin’s mouth twitches into a smirk. “You chickened out, you mean.”

Heat fills Chanyeol’s cheeks, because it’s mostly true. “Shut up,” he says weakly and Jongin chuckles, amused. “I was too worried that you’d leave. That this whole keeping-it-a-secret thing meant it’d be easier to break up. To just...end things.” He sighs. “I didn’t want to bring it up if that was the case.”

“Hey,” Jongin says softly, and he pushes Chanyeol onto his back to climb up into his lap. The shorts he’s wearing ride up a little along his thighs, his knees pressing warm and snug against Chanyeol’s hips. Smiling down at him, Jongin takes Chanyeol’s face in his hands and leans forward until they’re so close Chanyeol could count each of his eyelashes. “Hey, I’m not going anywhere.”

And it’s like that’s what Chanyeol’s been waiting for, just to hear Jongin say those words. To reassure him that he’s not leaving, that even though Chanyeol might want to tell everyone they know that they’re together, Jongin would still be with him, smiling and holding his hand. The last remaining unease in his body fades away and all that’s left is this overwhelming feeling of relief and happiness and he sighs contentedly, a smile playing at his lips.

“Good,” he says, sliding a hand around the back of Jongin’s neck and drawing him into a kiss. “Good,” he whispers against his lips, as Jongin’s mouth stretches into a big, pleased smile and he laughs breathlessly.

They kiss slowly, unlike earlier when Chanyeol pressed Jongin into the door. That had been desperate and a little rushed, but this is gentle and simmering, like the quiet burn of a candle, the two of them coming together again after days of confusion and uncertainties. Chanyeol slides his hand up into Jongin’s hair, his other hand wrapping around his waist, and Jongin sighs into his lips as he stretches out on top of him, legs tangling together, bed sheets rustling underneath their weight. Chanyeol feels completely at peace now, his heart threatening to burst with happiness because everything is okay. He gets it now, why things had been they way they were, and he thinks it’ll be easier to convince Jongin now that maybe they could tell their friends the truth. He thinks, even if Jongin needs a little more time to get used to the idea, that Chanyeol would be okay with waiting until he’s ready because now he understands.

“You’re thinking too much,” Jongin whines, pulling Chanyeol out of his thoughts. Jongin frowns down at him, looking adorably annoyed and Chanyeol chuckles softly.

“Sorry,” he says, gently stroking his fingers through Jongin’s hair, “I think I’m still processing everything.”

Jongin makes a tiny noise of understanding, but doesn’t say anything else. Instead, he just looks down at Chanyeol for a long time, so long that Chanyeol starts to squirm. He narrows his eyes at him and reaches out to punch him in the shoulder when Jongin suddenly says, “Wait, I have an idea,” and he scrambles out of Chanyeol’s lap, much to his displeasure.

“What’re you--” Chanyeol starts, only to get distracted as Jongin yanks open the drawers on the bedside table and searches for something, items rolling around and clattering against each other. Jongin lets out a tiny exclamation of success just as Chanyeol starts to get impatient and then crawls back into bed. He grabs Chanyeol’s hand and shoves a fat black marker into his fist.

Chanyeol blinks down at the marker, then looks back up at Jongin, understanding slowly dawning as he takes in Jongin’s face set in determination. His eyes are a little uncertain, however, like he’s not sure what Chanyeol is going to do, and he says before Chanyeol can string the words together, “I want you to mark me.”

Chanyeol feels dizzy, his heart racing. He’s not sure he heard Jongin correctly and yet he’s holding a marker in his hand, Jongin went and got it for him--

“Are you sure?” Chanyeol manages to say and Jongin nods.

“I want you to do it. Write your name on me. Whatever you want.” Jongin speaks quickly like he’s embarrassed by his own words, but he stares straight at Chanyeol as he slides his hands up his chest, fingers playing with the buttons on his shirt again. “You can fucking write it on my forehead,” Jongin laughs, blushing a little, “I’m not going anywhere, okay? And if you want to stop the secret, then…that’s fine, too.”

Chanyeol stares at him, wide-eyed, because Jongin looks dead-serious even with his pink-tinted cheeks and the way he’s biting his lower lip as he waits for Chanyeol to say something. Chanyeol drops the marker onto the bed next to him, and pulls Jongin in close again, palm pressed firm against the back of his neck. “Are you sure?” he says again, and this time he’s hoping against all hope that Jongin is as certain about this as he looks. “I don’t want you to give in just because you feel like you need to or anything.”

Jongin shakes his head. “No, it’s okay. I’ve been thinking about it since last night, probably even before then, honestly, but since I was happy with how things were, I didn’t want anything to change.” He smiles down at Chanyeol, brushes his fingers along Chanyeol’s cheek, down along the line of his jaw and then holds his face in his hand as he leans in to kiss him. Chanyeol is surprised his heart hasn’t yet leapt straight out of his chest. He kisses back until Jongin starts to laugh, pulling away with an amused expression. “Besides,” he says, grinning. “Jongdae already knows, so I guess we should tell everyone before he opens his big mouth and lets it slip.”

Snorting, Chanyeol nods. “All right,” he says, “if you’re sure.”

“I am,” Jongin says firmly, and then he picks up the discarded marker and holds it out again. “And I think that’s enough talking.”

Chanyeol laughs happily, a soothing kind of pleasure spreading out in his chest, and he takes the marker from Jongin and yanks him back in for another kiss. Jongin reciprocates eagerly, hands sliding into Chanyeol’s hair and lips moving smoothly against Chanyeol’s, slightly chapped but warm and full and perfect, and Chanyeol feels the lightest right now than he’s felt in days.

The bed creaks a little as they move against each other more comfortably, fitting in together like puzzle pieces. Chanyeol slides a hand up Jongin’s back, dragging his t-shirt with him, enjoying the tiny gasps that escape Jongin’s lips as his fingers brush along his skin. He pulls away when Chanyeol’s got his shirt bunched up awkwardly under his arms to quickly tug it off over his head. He throws it somewhere behind him and swoops back in to kiss Chanyeol like he can’t bear to be separated from his mouth, and that’s perfectly fine with Chanyeol, who takes the time to work Jongin up, hands moving from his back to his chest. He drops the marker to the side again - he’ll get to that later - and flits his fingers across Jongin’s nipples, grins into his mouth at Jongin’s moan. He’s always liked how Jongin is so responsive and today is no different. Today, it’s almost better than ever because everything between them is as it should be, and it’s like they’re exploring each other for the first time.

Except Chanyeol knows what Jongin likes, which makes it more satisfying when he can nip his lower lip with his teeth and draw out a moan, or twist a nipple between his fingers to hear his startled gasp. The way Jongin ruts down against him as he winds him up is delicious, and Chanyeol’s arousal is building quickly in the pit of his stomach.

He breaks their kiss, laughing when Jongin whines and tries to follow him, tugging him back gently with a hand in his hair. “Hey, get on your back,” he says and Jongin blinks at him for a moment, flushing prettily, before he complies. He kicks at Chanyeol to move over and give him more space and Chanyeol laughs again as he does, Jongin’s mouth stretching into a cheeky sort of smile as he settles on his back against the bed. Like this Chanyeol can see him perfectly, the smooth expanse of tanned skin, the way his chest rises and falls with his breaths, the dark bruise from last night standing out along his ribs. The one from earlier, what now feels like ages ago, is mostly faded, while Chanyeol’s name itself has disappeared completely from Jongin’s hip. He frowns at that, rubbing his thumb across the place where it’s been, and Jongin sighs.

Chanyeol grabs that marker again and slides in between Jongin’s legs. He searches Jongin’s face as he twists off the cap, and Jongin is staring at him with dark, intense eyes. He nods, once, and that’s all Chanyeol needs before he presses the tip of the marker against his tummy and writes his name into his skin.

“Don’t move,” Chanyeol chides as Jongin wriggles under him, his gasps loud in the otherwise quiet room. Chanyeol can feel his arousal between his legs and when he finishes, he closes the marker and sets it aside, drags the palm of his hand over the bulge in Jongin’s shorts. Jongin’s hips move up instinctively and Chanyeol smirks, leaning in to kiss the groan right out of him. Fingers latch into Chanyeol’s hair and pull and Chanyeol grunts, works his way down from Jongin’s swollen lips to the underside of his jaw, licking and biting until Jongin is whimpering.

“Please touch me, Chanyeol, please,” Jongin whispers and fuck, that’s too much, really, the sound of Jongin’s voice going straight to his dick. He rubs his hand along Jongin’s clothed crotch a little harder, until Jongin pulls hard at his hair and makes this strangled sort of sound Chanyeol finds unbelievably hot. It’s also impossible to ignore, so he draws back, swallowing as he takes in the sight of Jongin flushed down to his chest. His heart swells at his name written across Jongin’s hip again, and he reaches down to undo Jongin’s belt and shorts.

Jongin pushes himself up into a sitting position so he can grab Chanyeol by the collar of his shirt and work hastily on popping open each button. His hands are shaking a little from his haste and Chanyeol closes the space between them, kissing him slowly and deeply to get Jongin to relax.

"Chanyeol," Jongin pleads against his lips and Chanyeol thinks he could definitely get used to Jongin saying his name like this. He slides Jongin's shorts and briefs down his legs until they fall in a pile on the floor and when he wraps his hand around his erection, Jongin groans low from his throat, pulling away to drop his head onto Chanyeol's shoulders. His pleasure distracts him from the fact he only managed to undo half of Chanyeol's shirt, but Chanyeol doesn't care, too focused on Jongin right now.

He eases him back down against the bed, licks a stripe up the column of his throat just as he strokes once up his dick. Jongin's hips buck up, but Chanyeol pins him quickly to the bed with his free hand. Whimpers fill the room as Chanyeol works his way back down again, tongue sliding hot over Jongin's clavicle before biting down until Jongin cries out, hands scrambling at his shoulders.

“Fuck,” Jongin pants, dragging his fingernails down the open front of Chanyeol’s shirt, “didn’t I say something about warning me before you do that?”

Chanyeol laughs breathlessly against his collarbone, licking over the tiny wound he’s inflicted. “Now where’s the fun in that?” he says, leaning away to peer at Jongin. “Besides, you like it.” He brushes his fingers over the mark and Jongin shudders, his hips rising instinctively, a silent plea for attention.

The pink in Jongin’s face seems to deepen as he trails his fingers up from Jongin’s knee along the underside of his thigh. His body twitches in response when Chanyeol dips down low, breath ghosting over his straining cock, curved against his stomach, and Jongin all but whines when Chanyeol doesn’t touch him, instead drops down to press a fleeting kiss to Jongin’s inner thigh. Jongin sucks in a breath, his other leg stretching out, foot slipping against the bedsheets as he seems to simultaneously lean in for more and back away because it’s too much.

Chanyeol doesn't let him go very far, holding his knee tightly and slowly, almost excruciatingly, leaves kisses across the skin. He moves higher, close to where Jongin is begging for attention, but instead nips his teeth into the soft flesh of his thigh. Groaning deeply, Jongin's hands clench into his shoulders and he nearly knees Chanyeol in the head as he moves, body instinctively seeking out more, everything Chanyeol wants to give him.

"What do you want Jongin?" Chanyeol asks. He flicks his gaze up at Jongin's flushed face, and slides his right hand up Jongin's left calf to his knee. He switches over and Jongin curses under his breath as Chanyeol ignores his dick again in favor of littering his thigh with more kisses.

"I think that's pretty obvious, don't you?" Jongin grits out.

"Doesn't mean I don't want to hear you say it," Chanyeol responds, smirking against his knee. He sits back, like he's waiting expectantly for Jongin to tell him, when really Chanyeol is trying to catch his own breath. His mind is whirring with how beautiful Jongin looks beneath him right now, red in the face and spreading down his neck. There's that mark on his clavicle, the dark bruise along his ribs, the tiny one Chanyeol just added to his thigh. And perfectly bold across his tummy, Chanyeol's name.

Jongin follows his gaze, glancing down his chest a little awkwardly to look at Chanyeol’s handiwork. He brushes his own fingers from each mark to the neck, down to his name, and then looks back up at Chanyeol's face. A tiny gasp falls from Chanyeol’s lips when Jongin grabs his jaw in his hand and draws him forward.

"You," he says, his voice barely above a whisper, and Chanyeol’s heart is pounding so loud he's amazed he can hear Jongin at all. "That's what I want. You." He slowly grins, and shoves Chanyeol back hard, laughing, "So stopping teasing already and do something."

Laughter bubbles out of Chanyeol, too, because playful, bossy Jongin is one of his favorites, and he’s only too eager to comply. "As you wish," he says jokingly, before he slips down and takes the head of Jongin’s dick into his mouth.

And the light atmosphere, the grin on Jongin’s face, is quickly replaced by a deep, aching groan and Jongin’s hands fisting into the bed sheets. "Chanyeol," he rasps, hips bucking up quickly that Chanyeol has to press them down into the bed to keep from choking. He sends Jongin a look, soft and reassuring, and when Jongin nods, relaxing as much as he can, he works his tongue around the head of his cock.

Chanyeol hasn't done this much before but he's figured out the little things that Jongin likes. Pressing the tip of his tongue just under the head, slowly working his way down to the base and then back up, and he slides one hand from Jongin's hip to wrap around the base where he can't fit. He strokes him quickly there as he licks across the slit, tasting precome on his tongue, a small involuntary moan falling from his own mouth. Jongin's hands leave the sheets and find his hair again, but he's gentle now, threading his fingers through Chanyeol's short strands, wordlessly encouraging him to go on.

It makes Chanyeol's veins sing with pleasure, Jongin's rapt attention. When he glances up at him, Jongin is watching, pupils blown and mouth parted. His lips are slick and wet, probably from running his tongue over them too often, and he stares down at Chanyeol like he's something wondrous. Chanyeol likes that, a lot, and he does his best to get Jongin as close to his release as possible. He pulls back a bit to catch his breath, licks up the underside of Jongin's dick before drawing back to stroke him firmly instead.

Jongin's eyes narrow at him, clearly displeased, but Chanyeol just chuckles. He leans forward to kiss him, and Jongin seems to channel his frustration into pushing his tongue past Chanyeol's lips, kissing him desperately. His hips move up on their own into Chanyeol's fist and Chanyeol jerks him off quickly, Jongin's tiny noises fueling him on.

"More--" Jongin gasps, "Please, I'm so close."

Chanyeol drops back down and takes him into his mouth again, relaxing his throat until the tip of Jongin's cock reaches the back. Jongin almost shouts in surprise, his body jerking up instinctively so he's resting on his arms and looking down at Chanyeol. His hips rock up into Chanyeol's mouth, and Chanyeol just swallows around him, taking him in all the way.

Jongin hisses, "Jesus," and gently thrusts up again, and again. Chanyeol's jaw is starting to hurt a bit, but he looks up at Jongin and holds his gaze and Jongin's mouth is completely slack, his hand in his hair drifting down to hold Chanyeol's jaw. His thumb rubs along his jawline and his eyes are trained at where his cock disappears past Chanyeol's lips and he whispers, "So good," which only makes Chanyeol moan proudly around him.

And that seems to be all it takes for Jongin to suddenly tug hard at his hair, a telltale sign that he's coming, and Chanyeol feels his cock twitch on his tongue before he does. He swallows it down, drawing back with a slight cough, his jaw aching, and the last of Jongin's release catches on his chin. Jongin looks halfway between embarrassed and delightfully sated, slumping back against the bed with a soft thud, his chest heaving. Chanyeol licks his lips, then leans down and licks the tip of Jongin's dick. Jongin's whole body trembles and it's glorious, he thinks, suckling softly at the tip until Jongin gasps and practically kicks him away.

"Fuck," he says, staring at Chanyeol with wide eyes. "Come here."

Chanyeol crawls up to him quickly and Jongin licks his own come off his chin which only makes Chanyeol groan, deep from his throat, and tilt Jongin's jaw up to catch his lips in a fierce kiss. He tilts Jongin's jaw up to catch his lips in a fierce kiss, body slipping down until he's lying against Jongin and now his own arousal is screaming at him, begging for attention. He ruts up along Jongin's thigh and Jongin gasps, hands coming around to to pull Chanyeol in even closer, slipping into the back pockets his jeans. Chanyeol knows he's close, that a little more of this and he would come embarrassingly in his pants. But that's not what he wants, and as he draws away a little to look at Jongin's face, he doesn't think that's what Jongin wants, either.

"Take this off," Jongin says, tugging at the front of Chanyeol's jeans. He reaches for Chanyeol's half unbuttoned shirt and finishes what he started what feels like hours ago now, while Chanyeol hastily works open his pants. He slides out of bed to kick them off, dragging down his underwear as well, and Jongin pulls him back in, kissing him hungrily as he pushes Chanyeol's shirt off over his shoulders.

Jongin drags him back until he's lying out on the bed again, Chanyeol fitting in snugly atop of him. Hands work their way up his back, fingers flitting softly over the notches of his spine, and Chanyeol sighs into Jongin's mouth, his heart beating so fast he can barely keep up. Everything feels like it's too much, each press of Jongin's lips and every brush of his fingertips going straight to his dick and Chanyeol wants so much more than this. He leans down, tonguing over where he'd bitten down against Jongin's clavicle earlier, and he wants to mark him more, wants Jongin to be his so completely that there's no question about it. Maybe it's a little selfish, maybe a little too sudden, they've never gotten this far before, but Chanyeol doesn't think he can push this desire away, not when it's practically crawling under his skin.

He draws back, looking down at Jongin imploringly, and he asks seriously, "Can I fuck you?"

Jongin stares back for a long, unnerving second, and then he laughs, the bright sound ringing in the room and easing away the nervousness in Chanyeol's heart. "Yes," he says, "god, Chanyeol, you don't have to ask that so seriously."

Chanyeol flushes, scratching the back of his neck, and reaches over to the open drawer on the nightstand to find lube. "Hey, we haven't, you know, ever got to this point, so," he says, feeling more and more ridiculous as he tries to string words together. Jongin is sitting back, looking at him with amusement, and Chanyeol narrows his eyes back at him, smacks him in the chest. "Don't look at me like that, I'm trying to be a considerate boyfriend," he says, but it comes out mostly like a whine.

"Stop worrying so much," Jongin says as Chanyeol finally finds the small tube and slides back over. "It's not like I don't want you to," he whispers, curling a hand around the back of Chanyeol's neck. He pulls him in until their lips almost touch. "Just do it."

"Okay," Chanyeol breathes, his heart pounding, "okay."

Jongin grins widely before he pulls him back into a kiss, like he knows how much Chanyeol needs that to relax him right now. His lips are gentle and coaxing, tongue impossibly hot as it slides into Chanyeol's mouth, and Chanyeol divides his attention between Jongin's lips and the lube in his hand. He manages to pop off the cap and squeeze a bit onto his fingers, and Jongin fingers squeeze his neck when he slips his hand between his legs.

At the first press of his finger, Jongin gasps, clutches his neck tighter. Chanyeol kisses him a little deeper, distracting, and Jongin relaxes enough for him to push his finger inside all the way. Jongin makes this strangled sort of noise that has Chanyeol drawing back to examine his face.

"You okay?" he asks and Jongin bites down on his lower lip but nods. Chanyeol starts to slowly stroke his finger in and out, lowering his mouth to lick over a nipple. Jongin arches into the touch beautifully and Chanyeol continues to kiss and lick his way across his chest like earlier. Now Jongin seems a hundred times more sensitive, fingernails scratching from his neck to his shoulder as he gasps and his body moves toward the pleasure despite being overstimulated.

When Chanyeol pushes in a second finger alongside the first, Jongin bites down, hard, into the juncture between his neck and shoulder. Chanyeol grunts, surprised, his arousal only spiking, and Jongin looks up at him, flustered.

"Well, it’s only fair I get to leave some marks on you, too," he says in a breathy voice, and Chanyeol really likes the sound of that. Jongin is starting at that spot where there's sure to be a bruise by tomorrow, eyes dark and hungry. He wonders if that's how he looks when he does this to Jongin.

Chanyeol crooks his fingers inside him in response, watching as Jongin’s eyes flutter close and he grips onto his arms tight. His body is hot, squeezing around his fingers, and Chanyeol doesn't think he can hold out much longer, desperate to feel that around his dick. The third finger goes in soon after, and Chanyeol reaches between them with his free hand to take Jongin’s cock in his hand. He's gotten a little hard again, still sensitive if Jongin tiny hisses are any indication, but he strokes him carefully in time to his fingers pushing in and out.

"Fuck, fuck, please," Jongin gasps. His hips are rocking down onto Chanyeol’s hand, fucking himself on his fingers, and Chanyeol doesn't think he's seen anything hotter in his life.

"Christ," he says, sounding amazed even to himself, drinking down everything that is Jongin like he can't get enough.

He slips his fingers out, Jongin’s whine going straight to his dick, and settles more comfortably between his legs. Jongin stares up at him, licking his lips and resting his hands on Chanyeol’s forearms. Chanyeol rubs his waist with his thumb, gaze roaming over his name on Jongin’s skin. It's gotten a little smudged from sweat, from their bodies pressed together, but it’s still legible. It's still clear, to anyone, that Jongin is his.

"Chanyeol," Jongin breathes, and that's just what Chanyeol needs to propel him into motion. He takes his dick in his hand, lines himself up, and slowly pushes himself inside.

And it’s like every fiber in his body focuses in one this one moment, the world around drilling except for him and Jongin, and Chanyeol feels like he can't even catch his breath. Then Jongin is moaning, the most alluring sound Chanyeol has ever heard, and Chanyeol is completely seated within the delicious heat and tightness of Jongin’s body.

"Holy shit," Chanyeol gasps and he can't even recognize his own voice. Jongin’s nails are digging into his skin and he tries desperately to wait until Jongin is comfortable before he considers moving. It's a difficult feat, to say the least, when all he wants to do is thrust into him.

Jongin shifts underneath him, and they both moan at once when Chanyeol slips in a little further. A breathless chuckle falls from Jongin’s lips and Chanyeol leans in to kiss him blindly, more a sloppy tangle of tongues than anything else. When he pulls away he says, "Can I move?"

Jongin nods with his whole head, sweat-dampened hair clinging to his forehead. "Please," he says, and Chanyeol wastes no time. He draws out with a hiss then slams back in and oh god, he thinks, this is too good.

“Come on,” Jongin urges, pulling Chanyeol out from his thoughts. He looks just about as overwhelmed as Chanyeol feels, and he rolls his hips down, painfully slow, so Chanyeol grips his waist firmly in his hands and thrusts up to meet him. A low, delightful sound of pleasure escapes Jongin’s mouth as he cranes his head back against the pillow and his body curves. Chanyeol can’t look away. His mouth hangs open and he probably looks ridiculous, but he’s too enraptured by Jongin to do anything about it. He just sets a steady rhythm, rocking into the incredible heat again and again, and watches the vein in Jongin’s neck stand out when he groans, the way his hands scramble down Chanyeol’s chest, fingernails catching across his nipples, how Jongin’s eyes get all dazed, his breaths shaky.

And it’s easier focusing on Jongin than himself, because Chanyeol’s certain he won’t last very long if he does. He takes Jongin’s cock in his hand, now fully hard, and enjoys the loud cry that Jongin lets out, bucking up into his hand for more. Chanyeol’s pace quickens as Jongin begs him to go faster, to keep touching him, to don’t stop, please.

“Jongin,” Chanyeol whispers, as everything starts to coil tightly around him, body aching for release. He’s so close he can practically taste it. “Fuck, this is--”

“Good?” Jongin says, a tiny smile curving across his lips. He tugs Chanyeol forward with fingers clenched into his hair, until their lips meet in a soft kiss, a complete contrast to the quick, heady pace of everything else. “How good?” he asks and Chanyeol’s not entirely sure if he’s serious or teasing, his eyes so bright and face flushed.

“Stop,” Chanyeol says, voice sounding rather strangled, “I can’t--”

“It’s okay,” Jongin says. He slides his fingers from his neck along his jaw, rubs his thumb over Chanyeol’s upper lip. Chanyeol lets out a shaky breath, thrusts in a little harder, and from the way Jongin’s body squeezes so tight around him and he moans, “There, right there,” Chanyeol knows he’s found that spot he’s been looking for.

From there it's impossible to do much but give into the sensation, the incredible feeling that spreads out in his veins. Chanyeol can't push it aside any longer, and when he comes it's with a deep groan into the crook of Jongin's neck, Jongin's hand fisted into the back of Chanyeol's hair. His heart is pounding so loud in his ears that he can barely hear or think anything else, body moving on its own as he rides through his orgasm with a few more jerks of his hips.

Chanyeol deflates with a heavy but sated sigh, hands sliding up Jongin's sides and cupping his face in his hands to kiss him deeply on the mouth. Jongin whimpers, grinding down against Chanyeol who winces at the oversensitivity. He slips out between his legs and before Jongin can even tell him to get him off, too, Chanyeol scoots down and takes his dick in his hand, stroking deftly from base to tip. Jongin pushes up into his hand eagerly, and grunts in surprise when Chanyeol presses two fingers back inside him, aiming for his prostate until he has Jongin all but writhing against the bed beneath him. Jongin comes for the second time into Chanyeol's hand just as Chanyeol bites a new spot just above his belly button. Chanyeol works his fingers inside him until Jongin whines, "Stop," pushing at Chanyeol's head, and Chanyeol draws away completely.

Jongin immediately reaches for his wrist and yanks him down into bed next to him, curling up against his side and resting his head on Chanyeol's shoulder. Chanyeol grins widely down at him, pushes away the hair in his face to press a soft kiss to his temple.

"Why didn't we do this earlier?" Chanyeol muses aloud and Jongin laughs against him, wrapping an arm around Chanyeol's waist.

"Who knows at this point," Jongin replies. He starts to draw mindless things with his fingers along Chanyeol’s stomach and it’s nice. Just lying here like this, with Jongin clinging to him, after everything the past three months, especially everything the past few days, Chanyeol wouldn’t trade this moment for the world.

He sighs contently, runs his hand slowly down Jongin’s back and says, “On Monday, we should tell everyone.”

Jongin stops drawing on his skin and for a moment Chanyeol thinks he’s going to back out, but then he nods and continues what he was doing. “Why not tomorrow?” he asks, leaning back to look up at Chanyeol curiously.

“Because after this,” Chanyeol says and he can feel the heat of embarrassment in his cheeks, “I think I want to keep you to myself a little longer. Or, you know, at least until Jongdae gets back.”

Jongin rolls his eyes at him before he snuggles back into his side. “So lame,” he says but Chanyeol catches the pleased smile tugging at his lips. He kisses Jongin’s forehead again and holds him tighter, his eyes closing blissfully as he smiles to himself, glad that finally, finally, everything is the way it should be.

 

bonus

“Three months?!” Sehun exclaims, slamming his hands onto the table and leaning over to stare, wide-eyed at Jongin, while at the same time, Baekhyun screeches beside him, “You’re dating?!”

Chanyeol laughs loudly. He’d expected this reaction but he hadn’t expected it to be so amusing. Jongin looks rather entertained too, sitting on his left at a table in the campus cafeteria. The lunchtime rush is just winding down, the cafeteria mostly empty save for the few students who came in after a noon class. Chanyeol has a class in another hour while Jongin is already done for the day, and he’s pretty sure Sehun is late for his class, continuing to stare at Jongin like he’s grown another head.

“Stop looking at me like that,” Jongin gripes, kicks his friend under the table. “And, yes,” Jongin says, flushing a little bit as he squeezes Chanyeol’s hand where they’re clutched together on the table. “Chanyeol’s my boyfriend.”

The amount of pleasure Chanyeol gets from hearing Jongin say that out loud for the first time is immense. It fills up his heart until it’s overflowing, his body thrumming with a kind of happiness he didn’t know was possible to feel. He can’t stop the big, soppy grin that takes over his face, and he probably looks insane right now, actually, but he doesn’t care.

“This is unbelieveable,” Baekhyun says, collapsing back against his chair and looking exhausted like someone just told him incredibly dreadful news. “No wonder Chanyeol kept turning me down when I tried to set him up with Krystal though.”

Jongin snaps his head to look up at Chanyeol who laughs a little uneasily and rubs the back of his neck. “You never told me about that,” Jongin mutters, narrowing his eyes.

“Oh my god, Jongin’s jealous,” Sehun whines, pointing a finger into Jongin’s face. “You really do like like him, don’t you? This isn’t a joke?”

Offended, Chanyeol says, “Why would we joke about it?” Beside him, Jongin looks a little flustered from Sehun’s words, staring down at his half-eaten plate of food, and Chanyeol smiles at him. He untangles their hands to instead throw his arm around Jongin’s shoulders and tug him in close.

Jongin leans against Chanyeol’s shoulder and smiles and Sehun makes a noise like this is the most terrible thing he’s ever seen in his life. “It’s true, okay?” Jongin says, and he gives Sehun a sort of challenging look. “We didn’t want anyone to know so that’s why we didn’t tell you.”

“Tell us what?” Jongdae says suddenly, dropping a tray onto the table and sliding into the empty seat next to Sehun. He raises a brow at Chanyeol and Jongin’s seating arrangement but then smiles and pops a french fry into his mouth.

“That we’re dating,” Chanyeol answers, grinning. He doesn’t think he will ever tire of saying this.

Jongdae grins back. “Well, I already knew that.”

“You told him, but you didn’t tell me? I’m your best friend!” Sehun says, and he looks at Jongin all wounded.

“He walked in on us, he doesn’t count,” Jongin insists quickly and Jongdae’s grin falls from his face, as does the sad expression on Sehun’s, like he’s suddenly realized something more horrific than his best friend lying to him.

“Oh god,” he says, sliding down in his seat. “At least I didn’t ever come back to dorm to see that.” He shudders.

“We were trying to be careful so you wouldn’t catch on,” Chanyeol explains, but it falls on deaf ears as Jongdae relates his story of catching the two of them and how horrifying it was. Chanyeol shakes his head and looks down at Jongin, says, “I don’t remember it happening quite like that.”

“See, this is why it’s better to keep things a secret,” Jongin says, wrinkling his nose at their friends.

“Yeah, but this is why it’s better to share,” Chanyeol replies before leaning in to kiss Jongin firmly on the mouth. He ignores Baekhyun’s instant, “Get a room!” and the retching noises from Sehun, instead just grins into the kiss when Jongin reciprocates, reaching out to tug him closer by the collar of his shirt.

When they pull apart their friends are eyeing them with various degrees of amusement and disgust and Chanyeol simply grins and says, “You’d better get used to it.”

Sehun groans while Jongdae looks amused, watching them as he eats like they’re a particularly interesting movie. Baekhyun seems bored by everything already, tapping away at his phone. Jongin sighs, resting back into Chanyeol’s arm and slides a hand down Chanyeol’s thigh under the table.

“It felt nice,” he says quietly so the other’s can’t hear, “calling you my boyfriend.” He smiles up at Chanyeol. “I guess this way isn’t so bad.”

“I’m glad,” Chanyeol says, and he leans down to kiss Jongin once again.