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Sunrise

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11-year old Hoseok was walking down the street towards his mother's bakery, bouncing happily with every step he took. He was impatient to get his hands on some of her tasty,freshly baked cookies after spending so much time playing with Namjoon and Seokjin hyung. 

He loved their bakery, he loved how happy his mom looked when she was baking, how Hee Young, his little sister jumped around, begging his mom to let her help just a little bit, her cute face lightening up when their mother let her decorate the cookies she had baked for their home.

The bakery was where his mom and dad met, fell in love and lived happily for 8 years before his dad passed away, An accident with a carriage taking him away from them.

Hoseok had lost his father at the tender age of five when his mom was 3 months pregnant with his little sister. It had been hard on all of them,especially Hoseok who was unnaturally attached to him.

He had been heartbroken when his mom told him his father wouldn’t be able to come home anymore, that he had gone to heaven and was watching over them from there.

 His young mind couldn't really process the

meaning of death back then. He had thrown a tantrum, crying and screaming for them to

bring him back, that he wanted him there with them not in heaven.

It took him a long time to calm down, his pregnant, grieving mom tried her best to console an inconsolable Hoseok.

But the one who helped him the most had been the five-year old Kim Namjoon. A too tall for his age, blonde boy who managed to worm his way inside Hoseok’s wounded heart, telling him that his dad wasn’t really gone, that he would always be with him as long as Hoseok remembered him and now, he was counting on him to take care of his mom and soon to be born sibling.

Hoseok remembered that’s what his daddy always told him. 

He would take Hoseok out swimming at the river, laugh fondly at his adorable attempts at catching a fish with his tiny hands and cheer loudly when the child managed to hold a slippery koi fish for one second. They would play until they couldn't stand anymore. Only then did they get out of water, dripping wet from head to toe and giggling about how mom would scold them about catching a cold. 

That was when an exhausted Hoseok would jump on his father, begging him to carry him back with a pout, promising that when he grew up, he would carry daddy around. And the older man was nothing but weak for his endearing, precious child. He would pick up Hoseok and kiss his forehead. He would tell him he should grow up, become strong and reliable. Become happy, make his family happy and take care of them if he couldn't. 

And with time he became better, became happier, accepting his dad's death slowly. He wanted to become strong for his mom and sister, swearing that he'll protect them and make them happy.

 And he did. 

Now 6 years later Hoseok was an energetic, happy ball of sunshine, living with his mom and little sister, having two kind friends, and he was more than satisfied with his life. He knew his mom still missed his dad, they all did. Even Hee Young who'd never even gotten the chance to meet him missed him.

Not that he really remembered their father's face all that much himself, he only heard from everyone, including his mother, that he had his bright smile and small dimples. That he specially looked like him when he smiled. So he always smiled and did his best to cheer them up.That was all he wanted for them.

Happiness.

He did everything he could think of. From getting straight A’s in class to imitating the clowns in the the town. He even started dancing for them to random music that played in town during town festivals just to brighten up their moods, which caused his mom to take him to a dancing class, saying he needed to try it out it would be so fun.

 He was skeptical, not really wanting to lose more of  his free time to classes, but she managed to convince to just give it a try. His friends totally agreeing with her when she bribed them with cookies. 

And of course she was right. Because she was always right.

He became immensely invested in dancing, trying his best to become good at it, practicing as much as he could(which wasn't a lot considering his massive amount of play dates with Namjoon and Jin and helping his mom in the bakery not to mention his worst enemy :studying ).But he loved how it put a proud smile on his mom’s face and caused Hee Young to giggle cutely. 

Finding a dance class wasn’t very hard. since they lived in the resort town of the kingdom, which was filled with many places and events that absolutely needed a lot dancers. The best dancers and singers of their kingdom, even those who joined the court, were trained in this town.

His dance class was big and had many students. Most of them teenagers who intended to become dancers to make money or dreamed to join the court and dance for royal occasions.But for him, dance was one thing he could do to make his loved ones smile.

And the large number of students made Hoseok really happy when his stern teacher praised him above others, saying Hoseok was one of his best students. It only made him more determined to become better. 

Hosek snapped out of his daydreams when he reached the bakery. He pushed the door open and was instantly greeted with the mouthwatering smell of vanilla and honey. The redhead quickly skipped to the kitchen, catching sight of his mom working on a chocolate cake, and greeted her.

"Hi mom. I'm back. Do you need any help?"

Hyun Ae’s eyes softened at the sight of his earnest smile "welcome back honey. How was your day? Did you have fun with your friends?"

Hoseok sneaked a cookie out of the jar and devoured it hungrily."Yeah,it was great. We finally got to see jin hyung after two WEEKS. His parents don't let him come out to play cause we're not rich like them. Why are they so mean? Jin hyung is our friend too aish. But he promised he'll come to play tomorrow too! Isn’t that great? Oh and Joon and Jin hyung really loved the cake you made us and thanked you! Well of course they did. Your baking is the best after all" He then pouted at her "But Jin hyung ate most of it and said he needed energy to play with kids. Can you believe him mom? He’s only 2 years older than us! And joon just gave him half of his share without saying anything! he's so so….agh.”

His mom smiled at his rambling and ran a flour-covered hand through his red locks before telling him to go take a bath before dinner, completely ignoring his complains about getting flour and chocolate in his hair.

Seokjin's topic wasn't anything new though. Hyun Ae was very surprised when she found out her son had become friends with Kim Seokjin, The town's most important and wealthy man's son. A noble man who used to be an adviser of their king but had retired. 

What she wasn't surprised about was the Kims' blant displeasure about said friendship. It was obvious that Seokjin's parents were less than thrilled with the thought of their precious heir playing with common kids in dirt and mud. But somehow the two common boys managed to keep their friendship with the beautiful heir alive over the years. Hyun Ae hoped they would keep it for a long time,especially when she saw the awestruck way young Namjoon looked at the 13-year old noble.

The next day Hoseok came back home earlier than usual, murmuring angrily as he stumped his way to the kitchen. Hyun Ae raised an eyebrow at his displeased face.

"Hey honey, what's wrong?"

Hosek just pouted at her,remembering his conversation with Jin from earlier

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They were taking a break, laying on the grass after playing for a few hours. Hosek was resting his head on Seokjin's lap, the brown haired boy pating his head gently while humming quietly. 

Hoseok has always loved Jin's voice. It was so gentle and beautiful, like an angel's voice. But the 11-year old knew better than to say anything since the last time Namjoon complimented his voice, the eldest had blushed like crazy and refused to sing for them for a whole month(He still had a grudge against Joon for that) so he kept his mouth shut and started to doze off, but jin's voice snapped him awake.

"Guys, I have to tell you something. But first I….I need you to promise me something?”

The youngsters looked at his concerned face with a questioning gaze. "What's wrong hyung? Did something bad happen? Are you ok? Did someone hurt you?" Hoseok smiled at Namjoon's concerned voice, finding it endearing how protective the blonde was over their hyung, despite being younger than him.

Jin just smiled at him gently. "Don't worry Joonie.I'm fine. But i need you to listen to me carefully" Jin's voice became serious again."Look, I don't want to scare you or anything but last night, father had an important guest over and I heard their conversation." The brown haired boy continued “It seems like there's an active group kidnapping people. He said they believe that group wants to sell them as slaves, so I want you to promise that you'll be careful, okay? Don't go alone anywhere and don't stay out late. Several people have already disappeared."

The two younger boys just blinked at him before Namjoon decided to reassure their mother hen of a hyung." Hyung that can't be true. You know slavery had been banned by the current king's grandfather over 170 years ago. Who would dare defy the rules like that? I doubt anyone who can afford it, would actually take the risk while they can get whatever they want with money" Hoseok nodded his head at the blond's words while trying not to look too surprised by his too specific information. The boy just read too many books for his own good.

"That's true hyung. Besides why should they want us anyway? We're just kids we can't do any laborious work or anything."

Jin gave a frustrated sigh at their stupidity. They were too naive. Too innocent. They didn't know how wicked and evil people could get. How powerful people were arrogant and selfish, taking pleasure in abusing their power, thinking they were allowed to ruin someone's life just because they could. They would Ignore other people’s misery as long as they got what they desired.

He didn't want his only friends to get hurt by greedy people, just the thought of losing them made him unable to breathe and he could feel the burn in his eyes." Are you idiots serious? I'm telling you that group is dangerous. People like them will do ANYTHING,ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING, for money. Please, please just listen to me for once and don't go out alone ok?" 

Jin couldn’t bring himself to talk about his cousin.The sweet 10-year old who had gone missing a week ago. He couldn’t lose his friends too.He just couldn't.

The two younger boys were surprised at Jin's desperate tone and tear rimmed eyes. Seokjin barely cried in front of them. That's why his tears made them realize that it wasn't some joke but very much real. They quickly hugged him to calm him down as the older started sobbing.

"sshhh it's ok, hyung. We promise we'll be more careful, ok? We won't go out alone or stay out late either,right Hobi?" Namjoon looked at the redhead for support.He wasn’t used to seeing the older so upset. Hoseok quickly nodded his head,wanting to reassure their hyung too."Yeah.it'll be fine hyung. I promise.”

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Hyun Ae stared at her son with concern, having heard the same rumors from some customers as well. She didn't want to believe them, but if Seokjin said the same thing then it must be true.

Hoseok noticed her worried face and gave her a bright smile" It's ok mom. I'll be careful. Nothing bad will happen.I promise."

 

It wasn't until two weeks later that everything went to hell.

He was walking home from dance lesson, tired with  muscles aching all over. As he stepped into an empty path leading to their home,he kept remembering Seokjin's words and felt a shiver run down his spine. The truth was, he had been pretty scared(not that him being scared was anything new),he just tried to keep a straight face for his hyung and mother’s sake.

Feeling a strange sense of dread, Hoseo quickened his pace, wanting to reach home faster. That's when he saw a man laying down on the ground, unmoving.

He ran to the him,worried about the man. But when he tried shaking him, the man's eyes snapped open and he jumped towards Hoseok, grabbing his neck and putting a hand on his mouth to muffle his screams. Hoseok tried to fight back,kicking his short legs and struggling before something hit the back of his head hard.

And then everything went black.

The only thing they found of him was his friendship necklace, gifted by Seokjin, laying on a lonely path.

 

Chapter Text

Hoseok woke up with a start. Face covered in sweat and breathing heavily. He took deep breaths, trying to shake away the haunting feeling of the nightmare

 

No, no, not nightmare. More like memories. The memories.The feelings of being trapped, being helpless, lost , held down, hurt. Seeing them again. Seeing him aga-

 

" Hyung are you ok? "

 

Hoseok looked around, searching for the owner of the voice and coming across Jihoon's worried face. Hoseok tried to give the younger boy a reassuring smile.

 

"Good morning." He gave the other boy a nervous laugh.Completely aware that he couldn't even fool a child with it. 

 

Jihoon just gave him an unimpressed look.But didn't say anything else, knowing that the chance of getting a cat to speak was much higher than getting Hoseok to spill his problems. So he just smiled back.

 

"Morning, hyung. You should come down to eat!! Master actually told the maids to give us decent, warm food since we'll be performing for the ball tonight and everything. I don't remember the last time we got to eat anything more than leftovers. C’mon hurry up” He tugged the older’s sleeve.” Why are you still lying down for??"

 

Hoseok smiled at his enthusiasm and decided to get up, the promise of food enough motivation to get him out of the bed.

 

Well if you could call the few measly blankets laying on the ground a bed. But he knew better than to complain about it. His back still hurt from his last beating. Hoseok looked up when he saw Jihoon bending down towards him, extending a hand. The redhead arched a fine eyebrow unquestioningly."What?"

 

Jihoon gave him a cheeky smile "Well, I figured you might need some help getting up,considering your age….." Hoseok scowled at him before swatting his hand away. "Brat, I'm only a year older than you." Jihoon laughed at his really annoyed but not actually angry face." I'll see you at breakfast...old man" he scurried out of their shared room before Hoseok could say anything.

 

His dark eyes softened at Jihoon's not so subtle but still endearing attempts at cheering him up. The now nineteen-year old boy got out of the sorry excuse of a bed. Getting lost in thoughts as he was changing, Hoseok remembered eight years ago, when he woke up in a dungeon,confused and terrified.




11 year old Hoseok looked around and saw a lot of other people around, noticing that most of them looked older than him.

 

'where am I?' was the first question that popped up in his disordinated mind, so he turned to the boy sitting next to him and voiced his question.

The boy looked at him with dead eyes and said "I don't know. None of us do.” His voice was even more lifeless than his face. It was scaring Hoseok. ”I just know we are gonna be sold as slaves to rich assholes" 

 

Hoseok felt his blood turn cold.

 

" W-w-what? What d do you mean?I…..I have to go back. M-my mom_I can’t leave..."

 

The other boy just shook his head at him and back,only saying one more sentence to the now crying redhead.

 

"Save your tears. This is just the beginning of our hell."




And he was completely right. After a few more kidnapped people had been thrown in the cold dungeon,They were taken to a deserted place in the mountains, to be 'trained' to behave like slaves. Some more spirited ones snapped and tried to escape.

 

But they were murdered brutally.

 

Just to 'teach' others a lesson.

 

Hoseok could still hear the echoes of their screams and see their crimson blood in his dreams. Hoseok had been utterly lost. The only things he’d been able to think about were his family and friends. 

 

Every second his pained mind could spare had been spent on them.The guilt of leaving them behind not any more bearable than the physical tortures inflicted upon them by their kidnappers, who had addressed themselves as the red snakes.

 

The thoughts of his once again grieving, lonely, miserable family and broken promises, which followed him even in his nightmares, the accusatory voices calling him a liar,was as painful as the feeling of whips and wet wood tearing apart his flesh.

 

Their kidnappers had been cold and merciless, not hesitating to use every method they deemed fit to break them. And they succeeded for the most part.

After a short time, most of them had been trained properly, beaten to submission by those sick people, before being taken to be auctioned off in the darkest parts of their kingdom, which the eleven-year old Hoseok had no idea even existed. 

 

But a few children like him, along with some young girls were left behind. Because apparently the leader had considered them to be too good not to be sold for a higher price. They had been trained even more, learned to talk impeccably and please, how to keep their mouths shut, how to listen to orders wordlessly and receiving harsh punishments whenever they failed to meet a demand.

 

And when they were deemed ready, the men with covered faces took them to an underground place, blindfolded so that they wouldn't be able to snitch. Hoseok could clearly remember that doomed day….

 

Hoseok shook his go stop that train of thoughts,  instead letting them stray to his family and friends. He missed them, missed his mother. His beautiful strong mother who would always cheer him up and give him hope. He missed his Hee young, missed her cute laughter when she saw small animals, missed her sneaking into his bed after a nightmare. How she would always insist on braiding his short red hair cause it was so pretty and red, and he would indulge her just because no one, absolutely no one , could resist those big eyes and dimples. Even when he had to endure Namjoon and Seojin's relentless teasing for the whole day, he still couldn't bring himself to ruin her work.

 

He missed them too. Missed the way Jin would always nag at him as much as his mom (if not more) to take care of himself and eat real food not just sweets, the way Namjoon always had a book in his hand, spouting out grownup shit neither him nor Jin could quite understand but still listened to anyway. Hoseok missed the adorable way Namjoon’s cheeks would turn red whenever Jin caught him staring, or when he would give the older boy a goodbye kiss on his cheek when Hoseok pretended to be staring at the sky.

 

 He wondered if they all hated him.

 

 Hated him for breaking his promise. For leaving them. For not listening.For making them sad. Had they already moved on and forgot about him? Hoseok really hopes they had. They deserved better than a liar anyway.

 

Hoseok made his way towards the kitchen, by passing his owner’s garand bedroom on the way. Lord Yun was his 3rd owner in the span of 8 years and Hoseok had been his for a year and a half now. The man was part of the court. With enormous power, money and noticeably low tolerance for failure. And with that power came great arrogance and tremendous greed. A greed that secretly destroyed lives. 

 

Of course, nobody knew that a respectable noble owned not only one but two slaves. Anyone who met the two slaves just thought of them as servants, who were especially talented in singing and dancing to also work as entertainers, even envying his master for having such beautiful servants.

 

If only they knew.

 

But Jihoon and him were smart enough not to arouse any suspicion,knowing that no one would bother with doing the right thing. They ey would just use the information for blackmail. Surely their master would just pay them off and then, Jihoon and Hoseok would be left to deal with the consequences.

 

Hoseok just wasn’t sure if anything would be left of them afterwards. And even if they didn’t die,the thought of being sold again made him shake with fear. He didn't want a new owner.

 

He didn't want a new him. Not again.Never again. 

 

Hoseok knew master Yun enough to know that he wouldn't hesitate to sell them to the worst he could find if they did pull a stunt like that. He snapped out of his thoughts when he saw the head butler. Hoseok bowed to the older man before greeting him.

 

“Good morning Mr.Sang”

 

“Hoseok. I was looking for you.” His voice was as impassive as always.“I trust you are ready for tonight’s banquet?”

 

He nodded his head at the man's question، knowing that like his master, the sharp man expected nothing but perfection. Hoseok had always known that master Yun was rather bold. Since he kept two slaves at his mansion right under the king's nose.But he hadn’t expected him to make them perform in front of this many important nobles.

 

The old man continued. "Well since you claim you are ready, I want you to go to the gold palace bakery and fetch some special desserts we’ve ordered before for tonight. The maids are too busy right now to go themselves.” Hoseok looked at the man with surprise. Normally he wouldn't be allowed to go out-

 

“I’ve already informed master Yun and you are to be back in 3 hours. We don’t want to anger lord Yun today,do we?”

 

There he got his answer.

 

The young slave bowed once again and went towards the kitchen for a quick breakfast,enjoying the rare warm food before going outside. He completely understood the warning in Sang’s words. He wasn’t stupid enough to try anything. Not anymore. Not after what happened 3 years ago.

 

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Hoseok was more than happy to be outside as he didn’t have many opportunities to enjoy fresh weather and sunshine. He hurried towards the shop, not daring to stop and look around for the fear of losing time. It took a while to find the bakery.

 

He was overwhelmed with the sweet smell of vanilla and chocolate as soon as he entered the shop.The nostalgia hit him hard.

 

He remembered how Namjoon and Seokjin would always cuddle him, saying that he always smelled like vanilla, even after rolling in dirt and mud. Although The interior design was too different, this bakery still had the same smell as theirs. Warm and inviting.

 

Hoseok hurried towards the counter, the atmosphere too much for him to handle. The dancer breathed a sigh of relief After getting the supplies (which were much heavier than they looked but it could only be his nonexistent weak muscles) and realizing he still had 2 hours left. Hoseok kept humming to a now almost forgotten tone as he was walking back in the busy streets.

 

But then he felt the hair on the back of his neck standing. Something was weird. Very, very weird.

 

That's when he heard a loud shout of “BE CAREFUL” before the world went black.

 

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Prince Yoongi was NOT having a good day.In fact,he was having a very shitty day.

 

The talk of his brother’s arranged marriage had come up during the breakfast, which ruined his nice date with his favorite tea. Fucking annoying.

 

It irritated him that their parents would do that to them,despite their promise.

 

Because no matter how much he pretended that he didn’t care,Taehyung was still his baby brother and he would be damned if he let him be married off to a stupid prince from a stupid kingdom (even if the said stupid kingdom was Kualryo, the second most powerful one after theirs, and the stupid prince was supposed to be kind, smart, strong and blah blah blah) when Yoongi himself hadn’t even met him before.

 

But what could he do when his stupid, stupid   brother had met the prince before and was completely okay with it.

 

Total bullshit.

 

He knew his brother wasn’t an idiot, and he certainly wasn’t someone who could be forced to do something he didn’t want to, especially without Yoongi finding out about it. So he had been honestly surprised when the queen said Taehyung had conceded.

 

it was a hard pill to swallow.

 

But he was more pissed at himself.Yoongi ran a hand through his fine blue hair and sighed, remembering his argument with his parents.He didn't mean to be so harsh.





“Well,Taehyung said that he fell in love with prince Jimin at first sight! Isn’t that romantic?” The queen said, eyes lighting up with a smile before the king added.“ We also need to establish a more stable alliance with their kingdom, considering the threat of the Fammoria kingdom. I’m sure you are aware that they’ve attacked our borders recently. When the news of their upcoming engagement reaches them,they won’t dare think about disturbing the peace anymore.”

 

Yoongi felt his blood boiling.He slammed his hands on the table,making the cutlery shake.

 

They couldn’t be serious.How could they do that to them?

 

“So you are saying that you’ll sacrifice your son’s happiness just like that?”

 

His voice was laced with anger and hurt. He didn’t want that for Taehyung. He didn’t want that for himself. Yoongi had promised himself that he would find him .

 

The queen tried to say something but the blue haired prince didn’t let her. “I’ll go and sort this out with my soldiers so please cancel it. Do you want him to be miserable for the rest of his life?like you?Don’t you care about him? You promised us.” His voice rose higher with every word. He was desperate. ”You can’t do that. It’s a deal you made.WE’ll DO ALL YOU ASK OF US,be the prince YOU expect us to be,do our duties and we won’t have to marry SOME ROYAL WE DON’T WANT T- 

 

“Yoon-”

 

“NO,I WON’T LET YOU DO THAT. I WON’T LET YOU RUIN HIS FUTURE BECAUSE OF YOUR SELFISH,SELF SERVING MO-

 

“Yoongi, please calm down” The queen said, voice pleading. She Laid a soothing hand on his arm and looked at his furious eyes with her own pained,silver ones.

 

” We love Taehyung as much as you do, honey. I’m his mother. I gave birth to him,held him as he cried,raised him.” The queen’s normally composed voice began to quiver. 

 

“He’s my child. Do you ...do you honestly think I would do something to destroy his future?That I,of all people, don’t love him? That I don't love you? Is that how you see me?” Yoongi’s eyes widened in shock.His mother’s words hit him like a brick wall.

 

” He said he wants to marry him,that he loves him,Yoongi.”The queen’s gaze softened.

 

Yoongi’s eyes filled with self-loathing, realizing the weight of his words.

 

He regretted questioning his mother’s love for them.The woman who cared for them more than anyone.The woman who refused to give up on her son when everyone else did.

 

When they said Taehyung wouldn’t survive.

 

His younger brother used to be a very sickly child,with a weak body and permanently burning fever. He would never forget the nights when the doctors said his brother might not get through the night for as long as he lived. During those horrid times,their mother would stay with him day and night, put wet, cold rags on his boiling forehead, wipe the sweat off his burning body and hold his hands through the nightmares and hallucinations.

 

SHE took care of him rather than letting the doctors tend to him.

 

And he discarded all of that so easily because of his anger.Yoongi looked at her,at the long blue hair which both him and Taehyung had inherited, framing her beautiful face and brushing against her back.He looked at the now sad,glassy eyes looking right through his soul.He looked at the lines on her pale skin that had formed with the passage of time and realized how selfish and childish he was acting.

 

“Eomma,no I...I didn’t...I know you love him. I shouldn’t have yelled like that. I'm sorry I...I just don’t want to lose him too,I’m sorry. I’m-” The queen  didn’t hesitate to wrap her pale,delicate arms around his body, running them on his broad back gently.Yoongi put his own stronger arms around her waist as his silent apology, knowing that she understood his remorse and sorrow.

 

Like she always did.

 

”I'm sorry.” He repeated.

 

The queen tightened her hold on him. “I know that you are worried about him.I’m too.”

 

“Eomma,then…”

 

“But... please give prince Jimin a chance .For your brother.”

 

The prince rolled his eyes at the mention of his brother’s definitely NOT fiance.“He is just a stupid prince!”

 

“Don’t call my fiance stupid!”

 

A new voice yelled out.They all turned around to look at the newly entered prince. He was glaring at Yoongi. Not that his puppy like glare did anything to the prince.

 

“Listen here, you idiot. You can’t just marry some shady prince after you’ve only met him, what? 3 months ago?”

 

” I’m gonna marry him whether you want it or not. And the only shady prince here is you.”

 

'This fucking dumb kid.'

 

Yoongi stormed out of the room.

 

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It’s true that he was sorry about what he said to his parents but well, apologizing didn’t mean that he was actually going to go easy on the stupid prince.

 

Because love at first sight? The fuck? They weren’t 12 year old kids.

 

The two had only met 3 months ago at a royal ball for the first time and  now they wanted to get married?? And they were only kids!

 

Yoongi was totally done with their bullshit.

 

He decided to get out of the palace for what he called ‘get away from shitheads’ time.

 

The list of shitheads included everyone in the palace,minus his mother and his dog. So he sneaked out of the palace without telling anyone.

 

He just wasn’t expecting to be chased down by his personal bodyguard who was the  top 10 in the list of shitheads he didn’t want to deal with at the moment.

 

'Nope.Not today,kook .'

 

So he ran, skipping in the street and using the paths he’d discovered while exploring the town with his friend to get away from the younger.

 

Damn Jeon Jungkook for being that friend.

 

He ran as fast as he could,emptying his mind from his worries, instead choosing to focus on the gentle breeze caressing his skin to help calm him down. He wasn’t expecting that to feel this satisfying.

 

But what he absolutely wasn’t expecting was to hear Jungkook’s shout of ‘ be careful’ before colliding with a body and sending them to the ground.

 

Is this day fuking cursed??



Chapter Text

Yoongi lifted himself off the ground with a groan and saw Jungkook kneeling next to him.

“Are you ok,your highness?”

‘Do I look ok’ is what he wanted to say. But instead, he just scowled at the ground before realizing that he was half sitting on someone, probably crushing them too. The 20-year old prince quickly moved away and turned around.

Only to see the most beautiful being he’d ever seen laying on the ground, with soft looking, wine colored hair framing the angelic face of the young man.

A man he'd just knocked out apparently.

fucking great’

His face was curved elegantly, with full pink lips and a smooth forehead, and it Yoongi took an embarrassingly long time to snap out of his reverie and check on the unconscious boy. After trying, unsuccessfully, to shake the redhead awake,Yoongi gave his younger accomplice an accusatory glare as if to say ‘ look what you’ve done’   but the younger man just shrugged before a cheeky smile overtook his handsome face.

“Wow your highness you just knocked out the poor dude. I know you’re absolutely furious about the engagement. But you shouldn't take it out on a poor civilian. Such a tyrant and you’re not even the king yet”

The other boy glared at him “Shut the hell up rabbit.” Yoongi rolled his eyes at the guard before looking over the unconscious boy. His eyes widened when he saw a small trail of red on his forehead. ”Shit, his head is bleeding.” Yoongi tried to wipe away the blood before realizing that people were starting to gather, staring at them curiously. He ignored the younger’s mutter of “Is that how a prince should talk?” and put his arms under the redhead’s legs and back and lifted him up before saying, “We should take him to...to...”

“An inn?”

“Yeah….”

“Umm...Your highness?”

“.......”

“Prince Min Yoongi?”

“Hmm?”

“Hyung?”

“WHAT?”

“Please stop staring at him like that.”

Yoongi glared at him ” I’m not staring shithead. Where is the inn?” jungkook smirked at him before seeing something on the ground. Yoongi seemed to notice the package as well. Jungkook bent down and picked it up, opening the package.

“It…...smells sweet?”

 Jungkook asked with a questioning tone but Yoongi paid him no mind. Instead he adjusted the mysterious boy in his arms, noticing how light he was as the redhead’s head lolled against his shoulder. The prince pointedly ignored the rabbit’s raised eyebrows, ”Just bring it with you. It’s probably his” He said before starting to walk away.

But something was odd.

Very, very odd.

The prince got a strong, yet unfamiliar, sense of longing as he held the redhead in his arms. Like he’d done this a thousand times before. As if he’d finally found something he’d lost a long, long time ago. A missing piece that he didn't know existed in the puzzle. The soothing warmth of the redhead’s body, the way he fit in Yoongi’s arms so perfectly and his vanilla smell that enveloped Yoongi.

All of it was so painfully familiar. 

Which was completely irrational. Because he was more than sure that he’d never even met the man before. He wouldn't forget someone like this.

It was indeed odd.

_____________________________________

Namjoon woke up to the feeling of gentle hands shaking his shoulder. Someone was calling his name.

His barely open eyes recognized the worried face of his lover, hovering above him in unconcealed concern. He sat up on their bed slowly, parting his lips to ask what was wrong, why the older looked concerned and shaken, but the hazy memories of his nightmare and the cold sweat that disgustingly clung to his skin answered that question.

Seokjin leaned forward to push the sweaty bangs out of the younger’s face and gently planted a kiss on his forehead, bright golden eyes full of understanding as he caressed the other’s back.

“Want to talk about it?”

The younger shook his head, making the blond bangs fall back in his face.

He never wanted to talk about it.

Seokjin didn’t need the blond’s words to know that his nightmare had been about their mutual childhood friend. He pulled the slightly taller boy in his arms and started to hum quietly, rocking them gently from side to side, knowing that it would help calm him down a little. He pulled the blonde closer when dampness slowly began to form on his shoulder. He hated everything that made his normally strong, unshakable lover sob in pain and guilt.

Seokjin cursed their fate. He cursed that day.

He still remembered it clearly, as if it was only yesterday. That grim day, 8 years ago, when a teary-eyed Hyun Ae along with a deathly pale Namjoon showed up at his door, saying that Hoseok had completely disappeared.

They reported it to the city guards immediately, but all they got as answer was that they were searching for the criminals already. That their precious Hoseok hadn’t been the only victim.

They searched everywhere. Seokjin even begged his parents for help. And they looked for the missing boy for weeks. Everyone who knew the Jungs did. Even a crying 5-year old Hee young who refused to believe her big brother was gone.But all they found was the friendship necklace Seokjin had bought for the three of them.

The very two necklaces hanging from his long neck right now, those that he hadn't dared to take off in years, for the fear of losing the last remaining piece of his friend. Even if the owner was gone from their lives for good. 

But They didn’t give up hope. They couldn't give up hope, the only thing they could still cling to. 

Until their hope was crushed 2 weeks later.

Two men, who had been trying to kidnap a young girl in an deserted area, were captured by the guards. One had committed suicide immediately, using a pill situated in his tooth. But the guards had succeeded in preventing the other from doing the same and brought him in. His father asked them regarding Hoseok.

They interrogated the man.

To this day,Seokjin still didn’t know how, and he didn't want to know, but they managed to make him talk. He confessed to many things, but Seokjin only cared for one. That they had, indeed, kidnapped a small boy with bright red hair a few weeks ago. It wasn’t hard to guess who. There weren't that many redheads in their town to begin with.

They told Hyun Ae the news. The poor woman collapsed upon hearing it, scaring her curious daughter who had been eavesdropping on their conversation, to death. It his them hard, very hard, and….

Life had been hell after that.

Namjoon continuously blamed himself.For not listening to Seokjin,for leaving Hoseok alone. For being the reason that Hoseok was gone forever. The thoughts of his bestfriend suffering at the hands of ferocious people plagued his mind every second of the day and chased him late at night. The voices whispering that it was all his fault. 

It took Seokjin months to ease that guilt by a fraction, with him being lost in his own misery.

It took a lot of effort to convince the heartbroken kid that he couldn’t have done anything to save his friend. That none of them could’ve done anything. To make him realize that nobody blamed him. And seokjin was sure nobody did. Not even their lost friend.

That’s exactly what Hyun Ae told him weeks later as he talked to her about it. That neither she nor her son blamed them. That she was sure her son was alive. And that She wished oneday, he could be found again. They cried together for hours, with Seokjin watching from the small crack in the door, muffling his own sobs at the sight of the woman, whom the world had once again robbed of a loved but still had hope. She was the strongest woman he’d ever seen.

Seokjin found himself wishing the same thing. He found himself wanting to make that wish come true. He would give anything to see their sunshine once more, even if his light would be dimmed and dark. He wanted his friend back.

He laid the once again sleeping blond on the bed, cuddled close to him while thinking about the letter that would arrive in the morning. He smiled a little.

‘please wait just a little bit more,Seok-ah’

_____________________________________

Yoongi reluctantly set the unconscious man on the bed and adjusted the pure white blankets to protect him from the unnaturally cool breeze coming through the open window, before turning towards Jungkook. He opened his mouth to say something before a loud grumble interrupted him.’ someone is hungry

The prince let out a low chuckle as the brown haired boy blushed furiously.’ He probably didn't have time to eat breakfast because of me.’ it made him slightly, just a little bit, guilty. He stole another quick glance at the sleeping redhead before sighing. ”He probably won’t wake up for a while,” he smirked at the still embarrassed boy, ”You should go down and get us some food before the monsters in you stomach rebell. I mean who knew such a fine knight would be ...”

“Hyuuuuung stop it. Don’t mention it anymore. It never happened.” The younger whined pathetically. He knew the older wouldn't let him off the hook that easily. After all, it wasn’t everyday that the youngest knight of their kingdom would embarrass himself like that.

Yoongi smirked ”Ohh now you call me hyung?” The younger almost never got embarrassed, let alone blush. But Yoongi knew it was only a matter of time before he would get over it and go back to his usual cocky self. That means it was a rare opportunity to tease him. He did make him knock out a boy after all so he definitely deserved some teasing. But the bunny-toothed boy quickly left the room while muttering to himself about annoying hyungs and future tyrant kings .

And Yoongi found himself alone with the beautiful stranger.

Yoongi sat on a chair next to the bed and studied the boy’s delicate features. He wasn’t trying to be creepy or rude but the redhead had smooth albeit a bit sickly-looking tanned skin and a pretty pointed nose. His closed eyes that almost had no creases around them were framed by long eyelashes which rested on his ridiculously high cheekbones, the art being completed with his full, heart shaped lips and a small mole on his upper lip that instantly caught Yoongi’s attention. Yoongi couldn't help but stare. His features were so delicately crafted, as if he were a porcelain doll.

It wasn’t Yoongi's first time seeing a beautiful person. Hell his own brother was famous for his outworldly beauty between all the kingdoms and many nobles tried to court him because of that. (Which is why he didn't trust that stupid prince). Also living in the palace and being the crown prince meant that he was constantly surrounded by people trying to get his attention. Nobles at balls would introduce their pretty children to them, hoping to win him over, as if their children were dolls to be waved in front of him. It took a lot of effort not to shout in their faces to fuck off. The only thing that calmed him down a bit was the shame written on the faces of some of his potential partners. Yoongi wasn’t blind. He could see their beauty. But he could also notice the discomfort on their faces. The discomfort that came with being dangled around like merchandise. It made him sick that people would use their own children like that.

However this still didn’t change the fact that he wasn’t the slightest bit interested in them.

But for some reason, He was interested in the sleeping redhead.

The way he looked so ethereally calm and at peace sleeping there had Yoongi completely hypnotized.

Yoongi turned around by the sound of the door being opened, Jungkook came in with a tray of warm food and some bandages and towels in his hands. Yoongi quickly took the latter from his hands and proceed to gently clean and bandage the small gash on the boy’s head. It wasn't bad by any means but Yoongi felt like 

Jungkook felt something was off with his hyung. He’d never seen him treat anyone this gently, except his family and that only happened on rare occasions. But there he was, first carrying and now carefully tending to the redhead himself while he should, and normally would have, left that job to the knight. Jungkook was bewildered but he refrained from mentioning it, knowing the other was too stubborn to talk unless he wanted to. He continued to watch him take care of the red haired boy with unconcealed concern and wondered if the prince himself¹ was aware of this unusual behavior.

After yoongi was done,they started eating in comfortable silence before Jungkook’s melodic voice broke it. “Hyung?” Yoongi raised his silver eyes to meet the black orbs of the younger, urging him to ask his question with raised an eyebrow. The knight hesitated a bit before finally asking him.

“Do...do you know him?”

Yoongi shook his head “No...why?” He asked, suspicious. The blue haired prince was sure it was the first time he saw the redhead. But something at the back of his mind whispered conspiringly that he was wrong. So very wrong. Jungkook shrugged and went back to eating, pretending not to notice the other's piercing gaze on him. He also pretended that he didn’t notice the other stealing glances at the unconscious redhead ceaselessly. The knight just hoped the other wasn’t what he suspected him to be.

It took jungkook approximately 20 minutes of staying in the room before getting bored. His hyung, although a bit aloof, was normally a good companion. But today it was like his mind was somewhere else. Some way far away.

Yeah by far away he meant the other was too busy staring at the bed 4 feet away to pay attention to the now almost dead conversation so he decided to leave his ungrateful friend to pin over his new crush.

“Hyung, I’ll be down in the pub.” the prince simply nodded at him, Jungkook wasn’t sure if he’d even heard him. "Also hyung…..Please get laid more regularly.”

yoongi’s fork hit the floor as he graced the now closed door with his middle finger.

His mother would surely have a heart attack if she ever saw him doing that.

Well,whatever.

_____________________________________

I feel like I was run over by a bull.

Hoseok groaned quietly and blinked his eyes open. 1His body felt tired and there was a painful throbbing on the side of his head. grunting, he tried to sit up. It must be late.’ Jihoon should've woken me up .’

“So you’re finally awake.”

Hoseok’s eyes snapped open at the deep unfamiliar voice. He suddenly remembered how he’d been knocked out and was now in an foreign room. He let out a scream and tried to get up quickly but his feet got caught in the sheets. He closed his eyes, bracing himself for what would be a certainly painful meeting with the floor, when he felt arms wrap around his waist before crashing him against a hard chest, the arms holding him tightly. Hoseok panicked and pushed the man on the floor, falling back on the bed himself and immediately backed away. His back hit the headboard and his body folded on itself, arms hugging his knees to his chest tightly. He could hear his own heartbeat in his ears as fear engulfed him like a thick blanket.

It’s just a dream. Just another nightmare.

He kept repeating the words in his head.

It couldn’t be real. He couldn’t have been kidnapped again. Not again.

What was going to happen to him now? Was he going to be sold once again? To another person again? To another him again? Another monster? Hoseok started shaking his head. no no no , It couldn’t be. He’d just gotten away. He..

“Hey”

_____________________________________

Yoongi hissed in pain as his butt hit the ground, he could feel his tailbone screaming in protest. What the fuck was wrong with this guy? He just wanted to help him for fuck’s sake. It’s not like he was gonna kill him or something. He stood up and dusted his clothes, ready to go off on the other, but his eyes widened as he took in the redhead’s hunched, shivering form, feeling an unexplainable pang of sadness at the sight. His mind was screaming at him to help the boy, to protect him and take away his fear. He couldn’t understand, let alone fathom why he felt that way. But the urge to take away whatever was hurting the boy was overwhelming. He extended his hand, ready to place on his shaking shoulder but decided against it.

“Hey.”

He called out gently, taking a cautious step back as he saw the other’s body tense at his voice. “Hey,please calm down. I’m won’t hurt you.” Yoongi tried again, voice as soft as he could manage “ I promise I'm not...I’m not here to harm you or anything.” 

The boy mumbled, “Wh...what do you want from me?” His voice was so muffled that the prince barely managed to hear it, but he was quick to answer, desperately wanting the other to know that he wasn’t someone for him to be afraid of  ”Nothing. I don’t want anything. Umm..I'm Mi..My name is yoongi” The crown prince took a tentative step towards the redhead and cursed himself for almost giving away his family name.

”I brought you here after you passed ou...I mean..I swear I didn't mean to hurt you but...I'm the one who ran into you earlier. you knocked your head on the wall and passed out. I swear I didn't do that on purpose.”

Hoseok calmed down a bit when he heard the man’s gentle tone. It soothed him somehow. He didn’t sound like he had any malicious intentions, on the contrary, he actually sounded quite apologetic. The man added. “I’m sorry for scaring you.um…”

Hoseok got a bit embarrassed for his weird behavior, realizing he’d been overacting for possibly nothing and embarrassing himself in front of a stranger. Slowly, he lifted his head to look at the other for the first time. His cheeks flushed red when he actually saw him.

The man was simply ethereal.

His glowing pale skin made outworldly contrast with his dark clothes, his sharp cat-like eyes a piercing silver, strong jaw with alluring pink lips adored his face. And he had the most beautiful blue hair Hoseok had ever seen. It reminded him of the sky. He finally realized the question hanging in the air and looked down quickly ”H..hoseok.I..I’m Hoseok.”

Hoseok glanced at the boy discreetly, only to see the other was already staring at him.

He wanted to look away but he couldn’t tear his gaze from the blue haired boy. It felt like he’d met him before. Somewhere, someday, they had met.

He felt different emotions pass through him. He felt happiness, an emotion that had become a foeign concept to him this last 8 years. He felt longing and nostalgia. Like he’d finally found a missing piece of his heart. A piece he hadn’t known existed until now. He felt like he could breathe again after swimming in the dark ocean of life for years.

Tears ran down their faces.

Hoseok stared at the prince, gasping loudly when he saw his silver orbs slowly turn into a pool of gleaming crimson.The other had the same shocked expression etched on his face.

“Yo...you’re..you’re..”

“So I was right.” 

The pair turned to face the newcomer. Jungkook stood in the doorway, staring at the two man. One who had outworldly blue eyes and the other rutilant red ones.

The knight smirked.

“Your Highness,he is your soulmate.”

Hoseok truly hoped all of  it was just another nightmare.

Chapter Text

Soulmates

Ancient books say they are true lover. Lovers whose love had transcended dimensions and time. People who’d met in different lifetimes,in different worlds, who’d fallen in love so strongly, loved so unconditionally, that their souls became integrated, so much that they would find each other over and over again. It's said that when you find them, your heart knows it’s them from the start, even before their eye color changes. Soulmates weren’t born, they were made. The world didn’t choose a soulmate for everyone. The highest levels of love, commitment and sacrifice were needed to create soulmates. Which is why they were rare.

Extremely rare.

So much that almost no one had a soulmate.

 

 

“Your Highness, he is your soulmate.”

Hoseok stared at the two men standing in front of him. One looked mildly amused, leaning against the now closed door, while the other seemed flustered, shocked eyes staring at him with wonder in his bright eyes, along with something else he couldn’t quite place his finger on yet. Hoseok blushed and looked away when he saw the still red-eyed man’s dark gaze fixated on him, feeling a bit uncomfortable and shy that his soulmate was staring at him so intensely.

His soulmate.

He couldn’t believe his luck.Or the lack of it as a matter of fact.

Out of thousands of people, he just had to be the one who ended up with a soulmate. Hoseok felt like a powerful hand had wrapped around his neck, suffocating him like an angry python. A soulmate is the last thing he needed to make his already miserable life harder. It was too impossible. And he wasn’t just anyone. 

He was the fucking CROWN PRINCE.

Because now that his mind was less messed up and disoriented, he remembered that only three people had blue hair in their entire kingdom. Their beautiful queen from the furthest northern kingdom and her two sons. 

None of the natives did.

It was obvious who he was. Besides the fact that his companion just called him your highness. And the crown prince was famous for his pale skin and sharp, catlike eyes while the younger was said to have inherited his father’s tanned skin and his mother’s big eyes.

He wanted to throw up.

Hoseok wanted this to be a sick joke. Wanted the white covers of the soft bed he was sitting on to swallow him whole. He wanted to wake up in his old, cramped room and pretend none of it ever happened. But the feeling in his heart told him otherwise.It told him that he was wide awake. There was no illusion in those red eyes.

The man in front of him really was his other half.

Hoseok inhaled sharply. He needed to do something‌, he thought frantically. He had to get away, far away from this man,  even though the mere idea of leaving him broke his already cracked heart for no logical reason.

I have to go.’

A tender touch on his skin snapped Hoseok out of his thoughts.The prince, his soulmate, was holding his trembling hand gently.

”Hey..you..you are really my soulmate.” his eyes had a strange gleam in them, voice shaking slightly, a little breathless, as he gazed at Hoseok with wide, unbelieving eyes.”You're really here. Finally I..” He laid a cool hand on Hoseok’s face, cupping his cheek delicately. His palms were calloused, the skin rough, probably from handling a sword for too many years. Hoseok slowly extracted his hand from Yoongi’s grip, ignorant of the pain that flashed in his crimson eyes, before standing up abruptly, not letting the other two say anything.

He took his package from the nightstand, nearly knocking out the clearly expensive vase on it, before bowing to the two other men. His lower lip began to quiver

“I’m sorry,your highness.”

He quickly ran out the door,ignoring the stabbing pain in his heart, and left the two stunned men in the room.

_____________________________________

Hoseok ran as fast as his legs could carry him, furiously wiping the tears streaming down his face. He kept throwing quick apologizes to people he bumped into, the hopeful voice of the prince and the dejected look on his face haunting his every step. It felt like his heart was being pierced by a thousand needles as he forcefully ripped himself from the room. Every fiber of his being was screaming at him to go back and throw himself in Yoongi’s arms and hold on to him tightly.To never let him go.

But he couldn’t bear to stay in that room anymore. He didn’t want to wait for the prince to come to his senses and look at him with disgust.

Why did fate have to be so cruel,cursing him with a gift he knew he could never have. Now he had to leave a precious part of himself behind once again and it hurt. It hurt so badly to know that he would never get to see him again. He wanted to go back, wanted that more than anything. But he knew he couldn’t.

 Not now. Not ever.

But He knew that he would never be able to  forget the beautiful red-eyed prince.

_____________________________________

“FUCK” Yoongi punched a wall, frustrated and mad, glaring at anyone who dared to stare at him.

He couldn’t find the redhead.

'Hoseok.' His mind whispered.

He’d run after his soulmate as soon as he snapped out of his shocked trance, looking around for any sign of bright red hair. But it was like the beautiful boy had flown away, not leaving the slightest trace behind. Yoongi couldn’t believe that his other half, his own fucking soulmate , had ran away from him. It was maddening. He’d wanted to see the other for years now, thinking he would be just as happy to meet him.

But he wasn’t.

He’d wanted to hold him close, treat him like the most precious person in the world, keep him safe, make him happy and never let him go.

But the other didn’t want that.

He’d looked at him with fear in his vivid blue eyes. Like Yoongi was going to hurt him. Like Yoongi was there to ruin his life. It hurt. The way he avoided his eyes, as if he wished for Yoongi to disappear hurt. And he couldn't even understand why.

Why would Hoseok want to get away from him? It wasn’t normal. None of the books he’d read on soulmates suggested this. Sure there had been a few mentions of people struggling to accept their other half at first. But none of them said anything about someone fearing or running away from their soulmate. The records all spoke of people willing to try to get to know their soulmates once more in their new life. So why would the redhead do that? Why would  he be different? Unless…..

Unless he already had a lover.

He shook his head in denial. He didn’t want that. He didn’t want to be left behind by the person he’d unconsciously loved for 4 years.

“Hyung?”

He turned to the younger, hopelessness must have showed on his face, because the knight hesitantly laid a hand on his shoulder, trying to be comforting. “It’ll be fine hyung. We’ll find him.” Jungkook smiled at him “But we should go back for now, your eyes are still red.” Yoongi’s hand flew to his eyes almost instinctively ”Seriously? Red? What kind of red?” Jungkook shrugged “I’m not a girl, hyung. Red is red.”

Yoongi’s shoulders slumped, letting out a defeated sigh, he added. ”His were blue”

Jungkook subtly glanced at his prince, surprised at his gloomy tone. He’d been with the prince since he was a child and he’d gotten used to his usually bored indifference and sometimes cold anger towards most people,The only exception being his family and few friends.

But this was new.

“You’ll see him again hyung.”

“He ran away from me, Kook. Have you ever heard of it? Someone discarding their soulmate like that?” Jungkook frowned at the other man’s pained tone. It was true, he’d never heard of something like that. But soulmates were very rare, so who knows? maybe it was possible that not all of them fell in love immediately. He didn’t have that much knowledge on it. He’d only ever seen one pair of them. His cousin and her soulmate. He’d been there when they’d met, saw the way they looked at each other. And that’s how he guessed the redhead was his hyung’s other half. Because Yoongi had the exact same expression as his cousin’s lover etched on his face.

“It’s OK.I think he was just shocked. I mean pretty much everyone knows who you are. No one expects to get the crown prince as their soulmate. Of course, he’d run away.” He tried to console the older man. “But, how will I find him again? I...I need to help him. I can't lose him again.”

“What do you mean?” Yoongi didn’t say anything, choosing to place a hand on the younger’s shoulder instead. “Promise me. Promise me you won’t tell anyone that I have a soulmate.” 

“But_”

“No, No one should know about him for now. You know why I'm asking you this so don't tell anyone. Not even Taehyung” Jungkook let out a defeated sigh. He understood very well why Yoongi wanted to hide him from others for now.” I understand, hyung. But we should probably get going before people start screaming about a red-eyed demon possessing the prince. You look kinda scary right now.”

Yoongi stood there, hesitant. He was tired but he wanted to keep searching. But apparently a certain rabbit was totally against that. He took the older’s arm and started dragging him towards the palace.”Jungkook?” Yoongi whispered quietly. ”Hmm?”

“He was way more beautiful than I'd imagined.”

The knight burst out laughing.”You’re alread1y so whipped, hyung. It's disgusting.”

_____________________________________

Hoseok closed the door and sat on the cold floor of his room, leaning his forehead against his knees.

He'd run as fast as he could, barely getting time to breathe and only stopping for a few short minutes to wash his face and his thankfully once again black eyes. He'd arrived an hour late. The head butler had been furious. Hoseok knew he'd inform his master. ' later after tonight's banque'. He also knew very well that he'd get severely punished for it. But physical pain was the least of his worries when he could feel his heart being squeezed painfully. Now that he'd calmed down a bit, it dawned on him. More clearly and real.

He had a soulmate.

A handsome soulmate, whose memory made his heart skip a beat and clech in agony at the same time. He'd heard tales of soulmates before. But none of them had prepared him for the overwhelming rush of emotions drowning him as soon as he locked eyes with the man, nor for the warmth that enveloped his heart like gentle autumn sun. It made him want to laugh and cry simultaneously.

The PRINCE was his other half.  

The man everybody respected and feared. The man famous for being cold and mercilessly calculating, that very same man, had looked at him like no one else did, even if only for one shirt second, even if it was only because he didn't know who Hoseok was.

The regret clung to his skin as soon as he'd left the room. But what could he do? The thought of the crown prince being with a commoner was laughable enough. But the idea of him being with a dirty, used slave was downright ridiculous. He knew he could never be with him. Not with the shakes chaining him to the ground, bound to eternal hell. He'd stopped dreaming of freedom a long time ago. There was no hope for salvation, and no room for hope. He wondered what he'd done in his previous life to deserve this fate.

"Hey hyung, everyone is looking for you. Are you rea-"

Hoseok didn't know how long he'd sat there before the door opened, revealing a smiling Jihoon dressed in fine black robes, with the slightest touch of silver make up on his handsome face, whose smile turned into a surprised gasp upon noticing his bandaged head and once again tear-stained cheeks.

He rushed towards the redhead, crouching next to him and taking his sweaty hands in his own larger ones. ”Hyung, what happened to your head? Are you alright?!” Hoseok gave the younger a weak smile. He didn’t want him to worry over him. “Nothing, I just...I just tripped and hit my head.” 'Well at least it’s not a complete lie.' 

”Don’t worry. It’s just a simple scratch. I’m ok.” 

Jihoon opened his mouth, ready to argue with the older over his blatant lie, but Hoseok didn’t let him.”Jihoon,please....Just.. Just help me get ready?” He gave the younger a bright smile, not wanting to think about the blue-haired prince anymore. The sooner he forgot him, the better.

”You’ll help me with my make up, right? You know I can't do it right yet.” Jihoon gave up on protesting and nodded sourly. Hoseok gave him a quick hug before leaving the room to get his clothes for the evening,leaving Jihoon to stare at the closed door, sadly. ”You’ll be fine, hyung. I promise, you’ll be fine.”

_____________________________________

Seokjin stared out the window, the movement of the black carriage slowly moving towards the capital gradually inducing him into a dazed state. He glanced at his sleeping lover and smiled at his soft snoring sounds, remembering his endearing reaction upon hearing the news.

“WHAT?”

Namjoon looked at his lover with a dumbfounded expression, not sure if he’d heard the brown-haired male correctly. Seokjin chuckled at his widened eyes. There were standing in the middle of his office, Seokjin leaning against the wall with crossed arms while his lover paced around him, nearly knocking over the brown table standing in the middle of the neatly arranged room.

“I said, start packing your shit. We’re moving to the Capital in a month.”

“I know what you said, babe. But I mean why?”

“I got a summon from the king.”

The blonde took a deep breath. ”Why?”

“Because the court is filled with ugly people so they needed my handsomeness to bless them.”

Namjoon was slowly losing it while Seokjin clearly enjoyed his suffering. “Kim seokjin…” He glared at the older “Now is not time for messing around. Explain what’s going on for fuck’s sake.” Seokjin sighted. His lover was such a spoilsport.

“Ok,Ok, Mr.grumpy. Don’t pop a vein, I’ll tell you.” He took a deep breath before continuing ”Well long story short, prince Yoongi fired one of the advisers for god knows what and they’ve been looking for a new one so Mr.Lee recommend me.You know I've been also working with him for a few years now, aside from...you know what. His majesty trusts him. And they, I mean the king and prince Yoongi, talked with me at a few the royal balls which you, Mr.I'm just a normal town boy, refused to attend.Well now I’ve received a notice that they want me in the court, apparently they’re done with their bullshit background research. We can manage things a lot easier if we're close to Yoongi. ”

“WHAT?”

“I mean I know you’re doing well here as a merchant but I thought it would be easier to lead the ring from there to save more people and you can also expand your work there and I’m sorry I didn't tell you that before I just didn’t want to dissapi-hmpp”Namjoon cut off his rambling with a kiss, pushing his lips against Seokjin's in a frenzy. “You’re amazing baby.” He muttered between their kisses before leaning back in, kissing him deeply and putting his hand around his waist to draw him closer. 

It took him a moment but after getting over the initial shock, Seokjin didn’t hesitate to wrap his own arms around the blonde’s neck and run his fingers through his coarse blonde hair. Namjoon took it as his cue to deepen the kiss, pinning the older against the wall. He pushed his tongue through Seokjin’s slightly parted lips and pushed their chests closer. Seokjin didn’t put up his usual fight for dominance and let the other lick into his mouth and suck on his tongue as he pleased, letting out ocasional moans that only made his lover eager for more.

The moment Namjoon’s hands started wondering too south,the other man put a hand on his chest, pushing him away gently.

“N..not here..” His voice was breathless and it made Namjoon want to lean back in. But he nodded his head before picking the other up swiftly making his way towards their room.

They may or may not have scared the new servant girl half to death on their way.

What are you thinking about?”

“Oh, you’re awake?” Seokjin gave his significant other a fond smile and pushed away his messy blonde locks that always fell in his clear brown eyes. Hoseok always threatened to chop them off if the blonde didn’t keep them styled neatly. He was so strict about being clean and proper all the time, even more than the older noble. “Joonie?” The other hummed quietly, letting the older know he was listening. 

“We’ll find him,right?” 

The blonde gave him a dimpled smile before laying a loving kiss on his forehead.

”We will,Hyung. We will.”

 

Chapter Text

 

Yoongi stared out the window, eyes trailing the raindrops racing down the glass. The image of Hoseok the only thing that kept flashing in his blank mind, like the lightning outside. 

 

Brief, enticing and terrifyingly beautiful.

 

It’s been 2 days since their meeting And Yoongi still couldn’t comprehend the reason behind his sudden escape. The only reason he could think of was the one thing he didn’t want to be true.‌ He was beyond afraid.

The thoughts of his soulmate wanting someone else was excruciating. But the thoughts of him being afraid of Yoongi was much worse. After he had waited years to finally, finally find him.

He still remembered that day clearly, as if it was just yesterday. That winter, 4 years ago, a few weeks after his 16th birthday, when he’d first found out about him.

 

He’d gone on a hunt and got separated from others chasing after a deer.He lost the animal but instead,met a woman.

 

She was sitting under a tree, sipping on a cup of tea as the harsh winter wind played with her long, blond hair. The woman was wearing a short white dress with black and pink frills, flower-patterned leggings hugging her well-shaped legs.

It would’ve looked almost normal, beautiful even, if it hadn’t been cold as fuck for such thin outfit ….and if she hadn’t had two large, butterfly-shaped, pink wings on her back.

She was a demon, and a high-ranking one, apparently.

Yoongi paid her no mind,aware that most demons didn’t bother interacting with humans and wouldn’t do anything as long as you didn’t provoke them. It was normal for the two races to ignore each other most of the time.

“Hey, have you learnt no manners? You could at least come and say hello.”

Well, this one was apparently different.

Yoongi turned around reluctantly, not wanting to anger a seemingly strong demon in the middle of nowhere while he hadn’t learned how to fight one properly yet.

 

“What do you want?”

 

The woman smirked.“So many years and you’re still as blunt as ever,Yoongi” Yoongi stumbled back, a surprised look on his face. ”How do you-?”

 

She looked around, as if searching for something.”Hey,where is that little lover of yours? He’s always way more hospitable than you.”She continued looking around, not noticing when the prince took a cautious step back." Don't tell me you two argued again? I've told you so many times to stop being a stupid assh_"

 

”I think you’ve mistaken me for someone else.” 

 

She shook her hand, dismissing the boy’s words.”Don’t be stupid,Yoongi. It’s me,Lili.” The prince gave her an irritated look. Nobody talked to him like that. She continued in her high pitched voice, “ Your haircolor may have changed but your shitty personality and ugly face surely hasn't. Don't forget that drunk-like voice you have...” 

Yoongi seriously wanted to punch her, consequences be damned.”So where is he? I miss him so much and I-”

 

“Who the fuck are you talking about?”

 

His eyes left eye twitched in annoyance. But Lili only looked at him with a ‘are you stupid or what’ look on her face before answering.”Your soulmate of course. As if anyone else can put up with your lame ass anyway.”  Yoongi gave her an irked look.”I don’t have a soulmate.” The girl frowned, delicate eyebrows knitting together in confusion “What are saying, moron? Of course you do,Hose…...oh fuck!”She suddenly jumped up and hit her forehead before starting to scream nonsense.

 

’Is this woman insane?'

 

“Shit, I forgot you guys don’t remember your previous lives. Damn I shouldn’t have told you about him”

 

Yup. Definitely insane.

 

Yoongi just stood there, totally speechless.”Are you dumb?” She glared at him but Yoongi noticed that rather than anger, her golden irises were strangely filled with something akin to fondness. “Aish, you’re too grumpy without him around.” The prince was getting more and more confused with each word.

 

“Who-?”

 

“You know, I wasn't joking about the soulmate 

part.”

 

“I don’t have a-” 

“You do.”She interrupted him again, now looking more serious.”You know demons can see the soulmate mark, right? Yours is on your left cheek by the way.” 

Of course he knew that. Everyone who had  the slightest knowledge knew a soulmate mark could only be seen by a demon, humans only recognized their other half by the change in eye color when they met. No one knew they had one before that. But if you went to a demon, you could find out if you did. That is, if you could find a demon, and if they were willing.

“Besides,I've known you from your previous lifetimes.” That certainly shocked him. Why would he- 

”That can’t be true.You demons don’t mingle with humans.” The demon laughed again, more high pitched than before, scratching Yoongi’s nerves even further.

”Well, that’s partially true. I couldn’t care less about humans but my older brother wouldn’t shut up about him every time we met so I decided to get to mingle with you two a bit.” Yoongi clenched his jaw.”What does your brother have to do with my soulmate?”

Once again, the demon burst out laughing.

“So you believe you have a soulmate now?” She snickered, wiping a tear that had managed to make it out from too much .The prince stayed silent so the woman continued “Don’t worry I didn't lie about him.”‌ The prince frowned. He couldn’t understand but the thought of a demon hanging around his soulmate made him rather uncomfortable. Which was strange considering he didn’t know he had one until a minute ago. He still wasn’t even sure if the woman was messing with him or not, but something told him she wasn't. His awkwardness didn’t escape the other.

”Ohhhh somebody is jealous. You haven't changed at all, it's so cute. But don’t worry, my brother has his own little toy to play with, well at least he did before. I haven’t seen him since that disaster to see if he still has that pretty boy or not. But the fact that we don’t have soulmates doesn’t mean we’re gonna meddle with humans who do.” The teasing tone in her voice didn’t go unnoticed by the prince. She wore an amused smirk before walking towards him and laying her soft hands on his broad shoulders.”Here let me help you see him.”

Her hand began glowing a soft golden light before Yoongi could move away. The prince stood there, mesmerized by the warmth that flew through his body. A few seconds later, Lili inhaled sharply and withdrew her hands as if she was burned by him and suddenly, tears were running down her face, falling down and making small dents in the snow covered ground.”Hey..hey...what’s wrong. Are you hurt?” Yoongi gaped at her, not sure what to do with a crying woman, let alone a demon one. She shook her head desperately “H..he’s...he’s crying. He is hurt ….” She cried out bitterly. A voice interrupted him, before Yoongi could ask what she meant

 

“Your highness!”

 

He turned around to see a soldier running towards him, he paid him no mind and turned back to ask the demon about her outburst but…..

 

He was met with empty space.

 

She was gone and the lingering warmth on his shoulder was the only thing that proved she hadn’t been a hallucination .

He started having recurring dreams of a beautiful flower field a few weeks after. A redhead was always waiting to talk to him there, Yoongi knew who he was but could he never remember his face, just his warm, dark eyes and beautiful laughter.

Yoongi leaned his head against the window,his warm breath clouding his reflection in the rain-stained glass,the small wet beads on it turning his bangs a darker shade of blue.

The prince gently ran his long fingers on the cold glass, trying to reminisce the feeling of the redhead's soft skin beneath his touch. It was frustrating and downright ridiculous, like trying to hold water in your hands, only to see it had all spilled on the floor.

Madness was clinging to his brain like a persistent child. He would have preferred to go find him himself but he’d too much work to do. With the festivals coming up, everybody was running around the palace, asking him to sign shit and approve this and that. Jungkook told him he’d find him again but it’s been two days and still, there was no sign of Hoseok.

So Yoongi did the only thing he could think of.

He started banging his head on the window.

“I see you’ve finally lost your mind.”

The crowned prince was met with the sight of his younger brother as he looked up. He rolled his eyes after noticing yet another blue flower crown decorating his brother’s equally blue hair. It was time the kid started wearing his real, metal-made, crown rather than some grass. He was 18 not 8. But everybody in the palace loved him too much to say anything, even the old assholes in the court.

“Good morning to you too, Taehyung.”

The younger ignored his sarcasm filled tone and sat down next to his brother “Hyung, Are you ok?” He gently ran a hand on the other’s slightly reddened forehead, asking again when he didn’t receive an answer “You look sad, hyung. Did something bad happen?”

Yoongi avoided his gaze and sighed, completely aware that he couldn't hide anything from his brother. They'd always been like that, coming to each other to talk about their problems and seek comfort despite their nonstop disagreements. Taehyung somehow always knew when something was bothering his older brother. Yoongi wished he could say he had the same observation skills.

Taehyung stayed silent, patiently waiting for the older prince to speak first. After a while Yoongi let out a defeated sigh before saying “I….I've been looking for someone for a while now….” The other nodded his head, silently encouraging the other to go on “I found them,but….but they ran away from me and...and I don’t even know why….” His breath got caught in his throat and he hung his head low, desperately trying to fight back the stubborn tears.

Taehyung looked at his brother sadly. He didn’t know who his brother was talking about or why he was looking for them but he knew they’d hurt his brother. Because Yoongi, despite being diplomatic and smart and certainly scary as fuck(especially when women up from a nap), had the reputation of a violent warrior. His sharp, dark silver eyes and pale skin, along with his permanently serious face, didn’t leave the friendliest impression either. Whether it was the servants or allies from foreign countries, people tended to distance themselves from him, sometimes even unconsciously. And Yoongi had gotten awfully insecure about it.

It all started when they went to war 3 years ago.

It had been going on pointlessly for a long time back then. The other side, even though they had been the ones to start the war in the first place, had asked for a treaty. 

To stop the war. To stop death.

And they sent their queen, a kind woman with just a few guards, for the negotiations. As a token of their honesty, as a sign of peace.

At least that’s what they’d claimed.

And when their mother said she should go in return, they reluctantly agreed. Everyone did but Yoongi.

He had thought it was a trick, that they had malicious intentions, but nobody listened to a 17-year old kid. All of them just wanted the war to end as soon as possible. But he didn’t back down and in the end, the king had agreed to let him go as well.

It turned out he was right.

Because as soon as they set foot in supposedly the neutral zone, they were attacked by those very guards. Good thing Yoongi hadn’t agreed to leave his sword behind. He killed them. He was just a kid, but unlike Taehyung who refused to touch a sword, he’d been training for years. He won but when he turned around, he saw his mother on the ground, the other queen holding a sword, preparing to strike her.

Yoongi saw red.

He killed her. Pushed his sword through her slender chest and tore her heart apart.

After that they continued the war. And they won. And Yoongi was the hero.

But then the stories spread. Of the crown prince brutally murdering a poor, defenseless queen.

Nobody wanted to hear the truth, nobody wanted to believe the truth. And Yoongi had stopped trying to explain long ago. It left a permanent scar on him

But there were still people like Jungkook, who never looked at him differently and for that, Taehyung was very grateful. “Hyung, I’m sure you can find them again, and when you do,” He smiled at the older tenderly “you can ask them why. I’m sure they have their own reasons” ‘They’d better do’. He thought.

”Don’t be upset,okay? Just find them again.” Yoongi hesitated a bit before giving the other a gummy smile. Taehyung and Jungkook were right. His soulmate was probably just overwhelmed and needed time, all Yoongi had to do was find him again. He ruffled the younger’s hair fondly before opening his mouth, ready to thank his brother,when a glint caught his eye.

“What’s that?”

Before Taehyung could do anything, Yoongi leaned forward and took the delicate object hanging from his left ear between his fingertips, careful not to bend the fragile metal.

It was an earring, rather long and made of platinum and gold, with three very small sapphires at the top. The blue stones were the exact shade of Taehyung’s hair. It was very simple, yet beautiful.

Yoongi gave a low whistle.”Wow. It’s beautiful. Where did you get it?” Taehyung smiled nervously and took a step back. “It’s...umm..a gift..” His voice slowly trailed off. Yoongi raised a suspicious eyebrow at his fidgeting brother.”A gift hmm?...and from who?”

The younger boy took another step back and laughed nervously ”Haha..the weather is so nice today, isn’t it?” Yoongi glanced at the thundering sky and crossed his arms “Min Taehyung….”

And that’s when it hit him.

Giving jewelry, a combination of platinum,gold and valuable stones, to your life partner,was the tradition of a certain kingdom.

 

“It’s from Park Jimin, isn’t it?”

 

“Ok...bye.”

 

Taehyung ran away.

Yoongi ran after him.

“Come back here you little piece of alien shit. You aren’t even engaged yet. You can’t wear the stupid prince’s shit. OI, I SAID WAIT!” 

“I haven’t lost enough bran cells to wait.Also DON’T CALL HIM STUPID”

_____________________________________

“No, hyung. You are NOT moving from that bed.”

Jihoon looked down at the older boy sternly, arms crossed over his chest. He and Hoseok glared at each other heatedly. It hadn't been a nice morning so far. Hoseok had woken up to a worried Jihoon hovering above him, the pain in his bones and his bandage-covered body quickly told him why. The vague memories of the younger helping him back to their room and cleaning his wounds made him feel guilty. A beating was never nice but master Yun had been exceptionally ferocious and harsh last night. He knew why though. A simple mistake was enough for the man to hurt him, but coming back an hour late on such an important day was practically taboo, a sin only forgivable by whips and blood.

 His left leg hurt so badly he swore he could feel it in his bone marrow. Hoseok indistinctly remembered his owner stepping on it. Still, he tried to stand up despite his beaten body screaming in sheer agony. But the younger slave was having none of it. “You know I can't just lie here all day. I have to-” 

“I’ll do your chores and talk to Mr.Sang. You just lay down and get some rest, goddamn it. Just listen to me once for fuck’s sake. You’re injured too badly.” Jihoon said angrily, voice thick with emotions. Hoseok felt his stomach twist painfully at his mad expression, pulling back a little. He was beginning to feel dizzy, not from his injuries, and he didn’t like it one bit.

Hoseok knew the other boy was right but he was stubborn and didn’t want the other to have even more work to do because of him. It wasn’t Jihoon’s fault that his soulmate randomly decided to show up and ruin his day with his haunting red eyes. Still, he couldn’t let him do that. He didn’t want to burden him.

He tried to get up once more. “I said lay down hyung.”Jihoon’s voice was filled with cold authority as he pushed Hoseok down on bed and climbed on top of him, mindful of his injuries. He failed to notice the change in Hoseok’s expression as he pinned down his hands on either side of his head and said in an unusually firm voice “You will rest today. Your wounds might open up if you-”

The words got stuck in his throat when he realized the redhead’s body was trembling badly under him, dark eyes shut tightly.

“Hyung...?" He called the other man cautiously.

No response.

“Hyung, please tell me what's wrong. Did I hurt you?” The redhead whimpered. ”L-let me g-go , please ” He begged weakly, choking on the words like he couldn’t breathe, sweat running down his forehead. Jihoon noticed with wide eyes that the other was having a panic attack and he was still hovering above the trembling boy. He quickly released him and knelt next to the bed, trying not to panic himself. 

”Hyung. Breathe. Breathe with me.” The younger kept repeating it with barely concealed desperation, begging the other to take in much needed air, until Hoseok shakily took in a short breath, the feeling of suffocating slowly cleared. Jihoon held his hand and breathed with him, Slowly taking in a deep breath and releasing it, letting the other follow his pattern to calm down slowly. ”That's right, hyung. You’re doing so well."

He didn’t understand why it had happened. He’d only been there for a short amount of time but had never seen the other slave like this. He didn’t understand what had triggered him. Jihoon just wanted him to rest. It wasn’t like he was going to-

His eyes widened in realization. He’d only been in this mansion for a few weeks but he’d heard from the maids that Hoseok had been one of those slaves before coming here.

Jihoon felt bile rising up in his throat.

He’d been so, so fucking stupid .

He ran his hand through the other’s red locks gently, knowing that it would calm him down. The guilt of making his hyung panic weighed heavily in his heart. Hoseok was curled into a ball, head buried in his pillow as his body tried to fold into itself as much as possible. Jihoon wanted to both cry and hit himself. But now wasn't the time for that so he tried soothing the redhead, voice as gentle as he could manage

“Hyung, you’re safe. I promise.” Hoseok’s body gradually stopped shivering as Jihoon kept muttering comforting words to him. After a while he asked the older if he could touch him, Hoseok nodded hesitantly, muscle tensing at first before gradually relaxing under his touch.

Hoseok slowly opened his wet eyes and Jihoon could swear he saw them flash blue for a second. But it was gone just as quickly as it came.

_____________________________________

Hoseok didn’t know what came over him.

One second he was looking at Jihoon’s round face and next, his childlike frown was replaced with a sinister smirk and suddenly he was back in that damned room looking at that damned man again. He could hear his deep voice clearly, as if he were whispering in his ears. It didn’t take long for the panic to hit him hard.

There was no sound. Just his heart, beating to escape his chest. Fear filled every cell of his body. His head was spainning, trying to wrap around the idea of being there again.He couldn’t breath, like someone was squeezing his lungs. He couldn’t be there. Not again. His body began to hyperventilate. He gasped and begged to be freed in vain.

 

But something strange happened.

 

He was released.

 

And then he heard a voice telling him to breathe.

 

He never did that.

 

He sucked in a deep breath. It hurt. His stomach churned painfully. It was Jihoon’s voice. He listened and tried to breath as the younger continued to praise him, listening to Jihoon's breathing pattern and trying to imitate it. He nodded at Jihoon’s request to touch him. It was the first time someone was athere during his panic and strangely enough, Hoseok found the idea of being touched by the younger comforting rather than terrifying.

His eyes opened, revealing wide blown pupils. He noticed he'd curled in on himself and slowly began to untangle his limbs. It was easier said than done. His wounds hurt from the strain of the unnatural position, pained whimpers filled the air as Hoseok tried to sit up. Jihoon hurried to help him, wincing with guilt with every pained moan and hiss that left the redhead's mouth.

Hoseok looked at the other’s crestfallen expression and sighted tiredly. He didn’t blame him. He is the one who should be sorry for scaring the other. He was tired, could literally feel his eyelids dropping. Panic always drained him, but he pushed past it and gently laid a hand on Jihoon’s slightly larger ones.”I’m sorry.” His voice was quiet and ashamed, he was just trying to calm the other despite his own racing heart.

Jihoon shook his head and moved closer to the older, put his arms around the older’s waist and tugged him towards his chest. ”I’m the one who should be sorry hyung. It’s my fault. I-I don’t know what came over me. I’m sorry.” 

Hoseok wrapped his own arms around the younger after a while before closing his eyes. He really wanted to keep talking to the younger, to reassure him that he was fine, but his eyelids felt too heavy. He just wanted to fall asleep with the reassuring warmth surrounding him and forget everything. He slowly started to drift off in the safety of Jihoon's arms but….

A knock on the door snapped him awake, before the door was opened.

Both of them turned to the maid who gave them a suspicious look before saying. “Master Yun said to pack your belongings.” She cast a judging look around the almost empty room, as if mocking them for the lack of personal things in the vacant space “And be in his office in 30 minutes.”

The two shared a surprised look before nodding at her.

Jihoon had a bad feeling about it.

_____________________________________

 

“Hyung?”

 

“.......”

 

“Hyung?”

 

“.........”

 

“YOONGI HYUNG!”

 

“WHAT?”

 

Yoongi yelled angrily, startling his younger brother and knight. Taehyung turned to give Jungkook a questioning look after the crown prince’s outburst. “Kooki, why is he sulking?” They were currently in the royal garden, having tea and talking as they did every Monday. Color full flowers surrounded them, peonies, Camellia, daisies and others he didn’t know the name of. But the peonies were absolutely Yoongi’s favorite. He would always see the bright, pink flowers in his flower-field dreams.

Jungkook snickered behind his cup of tea, ignoring Yoongi’s warning look, he answered, “He’s lovesick.” Yoongi glared daggers at him. While it would have scared anyone within an inch of their life, qJungkook just smirked at the older.

 

Your ass is dead you traitorous rat….

.

.

.

Or bunny

 

“I’m not.”

Taehyung totally ignored his brother’s answer and leaned forward, very intrigued. Yoongi didn’t like the curious shine in his eyes one bit. He leaned back a bit when his brother looked at him expectantly 

”What?”

He hoped his deadpan was enough to deter the younger but his brother was an entirely different species, too persistent when he set his sight on something. Taehyung turned to Jungkook instead. ”Welll……”

The older prince decided to tune them out. Yoongi cursed Jungkook and looked at the teapot, wondering if he could drown the knight with it.

Probably not.

“What do you mean by lovesick? When did that happen? Why didn’t anyone tell me? Are they pretty? Do they love you back? More importantly! Who is the poor unfortunate soul who’s caught my grumpy brother’s small ass eyes??!”

Yoongi snapped out of whatever fantasy world  he’d been in (Which may or may not have included a certain redhead) to glare at his brother.

“The only unfortunate person is you, who’s gonna marry that stupid prince and live miserably ever after.”

 

“Don’t call my fiance stupid”

 

“Then marry someone who isn’t stupid.”

 

“You haven't even met him yet.”

 

“Exactly. He must have the brain of a fish if he thinks he can marry you without going through me first.”

 

Taehyung rolled his eyes at his brother’s childishness ”Don’t change the subject, hyung. I know you’re just trying to distract me from your nonexistent love life.” he glared at his brother before turning towards the knight and adding ”So…..Kooki, what happened?”

“Hey, why are you asking him not me?” Yoongi protested. Taehyung inhaled sharply, trying not to snap at his stubborn brother “As if you’d ever tell the truth.”

Yoongi looked at him with a challenging look.”Try me.”

Taehyung puffed put a breath “ّFine.” Taking on a mockingly sweet tone he said “Hyung, what happened?”

 

“......”

 

“......”

 

“......”

 

 “Nothing”

 

The crwon prince was met with unimpressed looks from the other two. ”Ok, Jungkook, hyung is clearly as useless as a brainless fish.” Jungkook chuckled at the jab “So? What's up?” Jungkook, who was enjoying the brother’s bickering, throw yhe oldest a devilish grin. ’time for payback, hyung’ 

 

“Yoongi-hyung wanted to fuck this pretty guy but got rejected”

 

“.........”

 

“.........”

 

“WHAT?”

 

“YOU FUCKING LYING DUMB FUKING PIECE OF FUCKING-”

Taehyung clamped a hand on his brother’s rather dirty mouth before leaning forward with widened eyes. Jungkook continued with a shit eating grin on his face.”Yeah. It was around one week ago. He practically jumped the guy. Good thing I was there to save the poor boy. God knows what hyung would have done to the unfortunate lad if I hadn't been there….” 

Taehyung gasped, scandalized, before turning towards the older, who was wiping his mouth as if Taehyung’s hand was smeared in horse shit. ”HYUNG! You can’t do that! That’s rape!” his reproachful tone made Jungkook burst out laughing while Yoongi visibly gagged at the foul implication and Taehyng continued screaming.

 The gullible idiot actually believed the stupid bunny. No wonder they were such great friends. Yoongi wanted to bang his head on the table but was too busy trying not to blush at the inappropriate thoughts invading his mind and planning a certain bunny's death simultaneously.

It took a while to calm the younger prince down and give him a more appropriate lie, with Yoongi sending death glares at his knight and said man calmly sipping his tea.

Well, at least the fucker managed to keep his soulmate a secret.

_____________________________________

The two slaves stood in the middle of the large office nervously, their master’s piercing eyes staring at them unmoving. Sitting proudly on one of the snug couches, was a young man, dressed in Impeccable dark robes, white hair styled elegantly over his red eyes. An albino.

The prince’s eyes had been red too.

Hosoek gave himself a mental slap to shake off useless thoughts and focused back on the two men. The albino was watching them like a hawk, eyeing them in a way that made the redhead cower back slightly. His leg hurt. Hell, his whole body did.

There was a tense silence before Yun gestured to the other man, Cutting to the chase quickly “This is Mr.Choi. You’ll be working for him for a while in one of his restaurants during the day and as entertainers for the festivals at night. He’ll be the only one to know your identity. You will obey everything he demands. I don’t want you doing anything stupid, is that clear?” He ordered, the menace in his tone not disguised the slightest beat as his sharp eyes zoomed in on Hoseok. 

The older slave felt his heart drop at the mention of a new master, his hands started trembling slightly. He didn’t like the look Choi was giving him. Jihoon noticed his distress and discreetly slipped his hand in his, giving it a reassuring squeeze.

“Yes, master.”

The two answered simultaneously, Jihoon louder to hide the tremor in the older’s voice. Both were very curious as to how their master had agreed to let them out of his sight but judging by the abnormally satisfied smirk on his face, they didn’t really want to know. The albino must have offered him a great deal. 

The left the mansion, trailing after the man obediently. Their whole belongings combined had been fit into an old, dirty bag, currently hanging from the younger’s left arm while his right arm was wrapped tightly around Hoseok’s waist, since at this point the older could barely walk without collapsing under his own weight. Choi barely raised an eyebrow at their closeness before walking forward. 

Jihoon looked strangely irritated. Hoseok thought it was because of the sudden change and the fear of an unknown place. He kept sending the younger encouraging smiles despite the obvious pain written on his face, just wanting to reassure him. The man kept walking without sparing the other two a second glance. He got into the carriage awaiting them outside, the two following him inside hesitantly. Hoseok tried not to fidget under the sharp stare. The man’s red orbs made him think of kinder, more vivid ones. A man whose deep voice was the gentlest Hoseok had heard. So unlike this one.

“Before going, I’ll have you know that my restaurant isn’t just some random hole in the wall. Nobles and important, wealthy people come there and I won’t tolerate any disgraceful behavior towards them. You’ll be left with the manager, Mr.Lee and be introduced as ordinary servants. But don’t even think about escaping or snitching. He's loyal enough to report you to me first if you decide to pull any stunt.” His voice clearly told them he wasn’t messing around.

The carriage came to a stop after a while. They got out after the clearly older man, wordlessly, just as they should have. The building screamed fancy, bright lanterns decorating the entrance. The place was obviously burning with energy and life . Somewhere none of them should have ever set foot around. Hoseok briefly glanced at the sign. The name of the restaurant was written in bold, golden letters.

Sunrise.

Chapter Text

 

“Your highness.”

 

“Hmm”

 

“My prince, you need to wake up”

 

“Five more minutes”

 

“Please wake up”

 

“........”

 

“Prince Ta-”

 

The sleeping boy groaned a bit before rolling over to continue sleeping, pulling the purple covers over his blue head. A deep sigh left the maid’s mouth.

 

“You know your fiance is arriving this afternoon, right?”

 

“Hmm...Ok….”

 

“............”

 

“............”

 

“............”

 

“............”

 

“............”

 

“WHAT?”

 

Taehyung scrambled to get out of the bed, tripping over his own feet, hands almost knocking out a half-filled judge before jumping into the bathroom. The maid shook her head fondly at the prince’s funny antics. ‘ He must really like prince Jimin. ’ 

She made her way out, going towards the kitchen to bring the prince some breakfast, since he overslept and missed eating with his parents and brother, but a loud scream made her rush back in immediately, expecting the worst, Only to see a half-naked prince standing in the middle of the room, chewing on his nails and tugging at a beautiful earring dangling from his ear. She quickly cast down her eyes, willing her cheeks not to turn red at the sight of the bare-chested man. The prince was really a vision, no wonder even the prince of Kualryo wanted to marry him.

 

“Umm...Your highness?” 

 

Her head was bowed in respect as she asked in a questioning tone. Taehyung’s widened eyes fell on her, anxiety swimming in the deep blue sea .”Does Yoongi hyung know?” The unexpected question confused her since expecting a much more severe problem. She shook her head, albeit a bit uncertainly.

“No, his highness has been too busy planning the summer festivals. I believe the prince doesn’t know yet.” Taehyung visibly relaxed, a relieved sigh left his slightly parted lips. ”Good….That’s great. Make sure nobody tells him yet, okay?” The maid bowed obediently in response, still puzzled by Taehyung's weird behavior.  “Also, tell Jungkook to come here immediately.” 

_____________________________________

Taehyung kept pacing in his room, imagining different possibilities of his brother meeting his silver haired fiance, none of them ended nicely. Even the best case scenarios ended in a few broken bones. He really did mean to tell his brother sooner, and maybe butter him up a bit with the promises of helping in the planning more than his share so he’d behave. 

But somehow he got lost in thinking about rabbit’s diet on moon and purple carrots and forgot all about it. Now he had to deal with a huge ass war over his dickhead brother and jealous fiance. He pitied whoever had caught his brother's eyes, he would drive them nuts. They were doomed. He was so lost in thoughts that a knock on the door made him jump.

“Your highness, may I come in?” Taehyung rolled his eyes at the cheesy tone. “Hurry up and get your flat butt in here.I need you to save my ass.” The door opened, revealing a smirking Jungkook who carefully closed the door before answering in a teasing tone,“First of all,my butt is fabulous, ask the maids.” Taehyung made a disgusted face at that, pretending to gag “Second of all, I’m sure prince Jimin wouldn’t want anything with that nonexistent ass of yours so it’s safe. Also Yoongi-hyung will skin him alive if he looks at your lame,virgin a-” His comment was cut off by a purple pillow flying his way, which he dodged easily, much to Taehyung’s annoyance. The prince turned red as he got another pillow to bury his burning cheeks in.”Shut up or I’ll beat the hell out of you, idiot” he mumbled. Jungkook snickered, Taehyung was too cute for his own good.“You can’t even take a child's lollipop, let alone beat the hell out of me.” Taehyung’s eyebrows furrowed in confusion “Of Course I wouldn't. Children are the best and they’re so cute.I want to….you know what, never mind that. I need your help.”

 

“Well if it’s about your ass i’m afrai-”

 

“JUNGKOOK!”

Said man chuckled at the other’s frustration before deciding to have mercy on the poor boy. He clearly needed a hand there before giving himself a heart attack ”Okay, okay. So what do you want?”

Taehyung puffed out a breath, sometimes he really wanted Jungkook to go back to being the shy, cute bunny who couldn’t look at him without blushing.“I want you to keep Yoongi-hyung busy till night.”

“What? Why??” Jungkook asked, confusion and surprise could easily be heard in his voice. The man was busy enough as it was. He didn’t even have time to go and search for his soulmate, having to leave everything to the knight. Jungkook knew he was really frustrated about it, especially since Jungkook hadn’t really found out anything about him yet. Which wasn’t his fault since the pretty redhead had practically vanished without the slightest trace.

“Jimin will arrive this afternoon, you know.”

“Oh” So that was it ”Yeah I’ve heard about it. Wait! You already call him Jimin? Just Jimin? But you’ve only met him a few times!?” Taehyung shrugged “So what? Anyway, hyung can’t know about him yet. It’s the first time he’s visiting me here and mom has only talked to him once! I want mom to love him first so she won’t let hyung hurt him.” ’ well at least it’s his first official visit’ Taehyung mentally laughed at his white lie.

The knight was almost endeared the way the other was acting like a 13-year old girl with her first crush. Almost. Because he always acted like a thirteen year old kid anyway. “Why do you care so much anyway? It’s just an arranged marriage. I thought you would be begging me and hyung to scare him away or something. Also, I'm the one who chased hyung down for leaving last time. Now you want me to drag him out? What about my pride??” The prince sighed internally, he was really tired of people calling it an arranged marriage.

 

“I’ll tell the maids to make you as much banana milk as you want for two weeks”

 

“Pardon?”

 

“Alright, a month”

 

“Okay, Deal.”

 

Taehyung sent a silent apology to the maids before glaring at the other.”Can’t believe I’m friends with you.”

 

“Aww, you love me.”

 

“Die”

 

“Seriously,stop hanging around Yoongi-hyung too much.”

 

Speaking of Yoongi, Jungkook wondered if he should tell Taehyung that his brother actually intended to go out today anyway. ‘Nah,I want the banana milk.’

_____________________________________

 

“This is for room 4”

Hoseok nodded, taking the food filled tray from the man before making his way upstairs, nodding to Jihoon who was cleaning a table. Working in Sunrise was a lot less harder than he’d thought. It wasn’t exactly easy, having to jump at every order and smile to stuck up nobles. Especially right now that was lunch time. He didn’t have time to sit for a second, But compared to that suffocating mansion, this was paradise.

Sunrise, as that man Choi had said, was no ordinary restaurant. It was exclusively made for nobles and the rich. Not that commoners weren’t allowed here, but the meals were so pricey that none of them could really afford it.

It was a big, three story building. The first floor was filled with warm, brown furniture. Tables and comfortable, dark chairs took up the space, a big chandelier hung from the ceiling, casting light on the raised platform at the corner, where singers and dancers performed for the crowd. Right now a girl stood there, playing a strange instrument Hoseok didn’t know the name of.

The second floor was more private. Filled with rooms with white and black furniture.For when the customers, he’d been told, wanted more privacy since many of them held their important meetings here. Hoseok cursed whoever decorated it with these colors though. They were a pain to clean. And the third floor was much more simple. There were a lot of rooms with 3 cheap beds in each. It was where the many staff of the restaurant lived. He shared a room with Jihoon and an older boy.

There was some kind of unwelcome tension between them that Hoseok didn’t like the slightest bit. Jihoon was still sorry and too careful around him, Barely touching him and Hoseok knew it wasn’t about his still healing bruises. Hoseok just wanted to forget what happened almost a week ago and go back to the pretence of normality they’d so desperately created. He didn’t want to be treated like he could break over something that happened years ago but still affected him from time to time. He wanted to move on from his past, act like it didn’t exist, hoping if he pretended nothing happened, then maybe one day, he could believe that lie too. Maybe this was a chance for that.

The manager was really nice but a bit strange. A tall man with dark skin and mostly gray hair, looking somewhere in his late forties. He’d been shocked at Hoseok’s state, asking what happened with obvious worry. The due had given him some lie about stairs and clumsiness, with their owner’s warning ringing clearly in their ears.

 

The man reluctantly accepted their excuse, but didn’t let the redhead work for a few days. Jihoon already had a crush on him for that. Hoseok didn’t really understand this unexpected kindness. He wasn’t used to receiving anything without being made to do something in return. Well at least, Mr.Lee didn’t hit them. Jihoon and he hadn’t really talked about this weird situation much since a week ago, too busy during the day and afraid their roommate might hear them at night. But it was nice, being treated like a human being for once in many years.

‘Would he treat me like a human too?’

Hoseok gave himself a mental slap. He didn’t want to think about him. It’s been more than a week and he was tired of feeling more depressed and miserable than ever, which was a big fit in itself. There was a large hole in his heart, where the prince really tore a part of carelessly. It wasn’t fair. The universe must be laughing at him or maybe fate hated him. But Why him?

“Table 6."

Hoseok hurried to the to take tray, setting it on the said table. A family of four were sitting there. Two young girls, one wearing impeccable blue and the other silver, sitting with their parents, who were dressed in ostentatiously expensive clothes. 

The two girls were staring at him rather strangely but it took him a few seconds to notice the flirtatious looks, too lost in the blue color of the cloth. He blushed and bowed submissively, wanting to avoid offending them or worse, their parents, before asking if they needed anything else and making his back upon receiving a no.

Just then, the door opened and two bickering customers came in, the door dinging in their wake.

“Hyung, stop moping already. I told you, you can’t find him with a day of-”

“Welcome to the Sunrise restaurant.”

Hoseok who’d rushed to welcome them, stood dead in his tracks, dark eyes falling on the two not so stranger customers.

“Your hi_”

_____________________________________

 

“Hyung, C’mon wear this.”

 

“NO.”

 

“Well, you have too.”

 

“No”

 

“We can’t go unless you do.”

 

“We can.”

 

“How old are you again?”

 

“Older than you, you fetus bitch.”

 

Jungkook sighed, the prince shouldn’t have hung out with soldiers too much during the war, his mouth had become dirtier than a sailor. He was already feeling tired and they hadn’t even stepped out of the palace yet.

“Hyung, it's just a wig. It’s not gonna eat you.” The older glared at him angrily “Have ever tried that horse shit?! It itches!” 

"It's horse hair, hyung." he knight rubbed his already hurting temple. Yoongi never wore the disguise, claiming he could defend himself and didn’t need to hide his obvious hair color whenever he went out. But it wasn’t just about him anymore. ”I know very well how much you hate it, hyung. I’m not the one not wearing it and flashing my bright, so naturally blue hair to the whole city whenever I go out, right? I know you can protect yourself. But what if we find your soulmate and your eye color changes in the middle of the street again? Or someone sees you with him?” 

He watched the prince’s eyes slightly widen in realization and nodded. ”Yes, then everyone will find out about him and you know how many people want you to marry their children. What do you think they will do to him? Can you keep him safe if he refuses to come live in the palace? Can you keep him safe if he actually, even If the chance is zero, rejects you?”

Yoongi grabbed the wig silently and disappeared into the bathroom. Jungkook was surprised that he actually looked ashamed and worried. It took the prince a few minutes to come out, wearing normal clothes and the dark wig before grabbing two sheathed daggers from the table and hiding them under his robes. He then turned towards Jungkook “Shall we go?”

‘I’ll find you today’

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

“Why the fuck can’t we find him?”

 

Yoongi’s angry shout made heads turn towards them curiously. Jungkook let out a defeated sigh.”Hyung, I would have found him by now if it’d been that easy, you know.” Yoongi gave death glares to the people who were still staring at them before stomping down the street, Jungkook following him with another sigh. The whole point of the wig was to avoid attention but apparently the older man didn't need his flashy hair for that.

”Hyung, where are we going?” The knight asked his grumpy prince who was pouting like a child. ”To Sunrise. I need to talk to Mr.Lee.” He threw Jungkook a cocky smirk “And you need to eat before your stomach rebels”

Jungkook cursed his hyung and his stupid stomach.

___________________________________

Seokjin slumped in his chair, letting out a tired sigh and rubbing his throbbing temple. It’d been a few days since they arrived in the capital and he was too busy organizing the new mansion and unpacking the stuff they’d brought from their hometown beforehand. At first he’d been worried about leaving the mansion to just maids but then Hoseok’s mother, who’d been living with them since Hoseok’s disappearance and the sudden death of Seokjin’s parents 6 years ago, insisted that she would not leave the town her son had been born in.

She wanted to keep her bakery open for the day he would finally come back. That place had been the redhead’s pride and joy, and she wished to keep it open for as long as she lived.

There was a knock on the door before his lover opened it, peeking his head inside. A dimpled smile appeared on his face when he noticed the brunet in the room. He walked in, a tray held in his hands. Seokjin hurried over to take the tray from his clumsy lover. The expensive rug back in their old mansion still had a stain on it.

He barely got to put down the food before the blonde grabbed his shoulder and kissed him on the lips. He kissed back before parting with a smile. ”You look tired.” Namjoon said, taking in the sight of his older lover. ”You mean I look handsome” The younger smiled at the sassy reply and sat down.

A plate filled with steaming food was put in front of him before his Seokjin filled his own. Namjoon smiled at the older’s thoughtfulness tenderly before asking.“Is everything going okay? Do you need any help? When do you have to go to the palace?”

Seokjin swallowed the delicious food and answered. “Everything is coming along nicely. Thanks for offering though but I know you’re busy too. And I don't have to be there for a few more days, so don’t worry.” He thought a little before adding ”Actually do you want to come with me when I go?” Namjoon hummed thoughtfully before shaking his head. “I’d rather not.” 

Seokjin sighed. His lover always refused to get involved with anything concerning nobles and aristocrats. He should stop asking him every time ”Any news from Hee Young?”

It was the blonde’s turn to sigh.”Not yet.” Seokjin became worried. It was unusual for the girl to delay her reports, knowing how much of a big worrywarts the two were ”But it’s been four months. Don’t you think we should send someone?” 

“I already did.”

Just then someone knocked on the door.”Come in” One of the maids, Seokjin didn’t know her name yet, came in. ”Sir, there’s a letter for you.” Seokjin took the paper before dismissing the girl, plump lips stretching into a full smile when he recognized the handwriting. ”Speak of the devil, she’s on her way”

Namjoon returned the smile, relief filling his cells.”Did she get him?” Seokjin smirked “You bet she did” he added ”Joon-ah,I think you need to call back the man you sent.”

”Actually it was a woman.”

_____________________________________

“Welcome to the Sunrise restaurant”

Hoseok stared at the two men in front of him, disbelief written all over his delicate face. His soulmate was standing in front of him, small silver eyes widened in bewilderment. 

His hair was black but Hoseok had no doubt it was him. No one else could look that breathtaking just standing there. The other man looked at him with the same shocked expression before taking a step forward, eyes clouded with something that resembled happiness. But that must be an illusion. The taller man came to stand in front of the older while Hoseok was frozen there. 

He stopped the prince from advancing any further. Yoongi hissed at him angrily but Jungkook ignored him in favor of glaring at Hoseok."your hi_" 

“We want a room.” His voice was harsh. The man’s menacing tone snapped Hoseok out of his reverie and made him take an involuntary step back. The look on the man’s face was scary. The slave bowed quickly when he noticed some people were starting to stare at them. He quickly led the two men to the best room they had up there. There was no need for the manager to tell him which room they should be guided to.

“I_I’ll be back to take y-your orders.” He bowed once more and turned to leave, not daring to risk another glance at the prince. His heart was beating like crazy, he wanted to stay and just stare at the now black-haired man, who was oddly quiet. But the taller man made it more than clear that he was very unwelcome and Hoseok didn’t want to anger the prince. Hosoek knew they wanted him gone as soon as possible and he wasn’t surprised by it.

But a hand wrapped around his wrist before he could completely turn around. ’Is he mad?’ He shut his eyes tightly and tensed, preparing to be yelled at or threatened by them, but all he heard was a desperate yet soft call.

“Please don’t leave again!”

Chapter Text

"Please don't leave again"

 

Dark, black eyes locked with silver ones

 The redhead gazed at the owner of the bright orbs for a few, long seconds, feeling like the cold fingers around his wrist were burning his skin, just as the clear eyes were burning his soul.

 

The tightening grip snapped him out of his slight trance and he tried to pull back, feeling trapped in the suddenly too small room.

 

"Wait.I have to talk to you." Yoongi's quiet voice rang in the otherwise silent room loudly. Hoseok barely suppressed a shiver at the low tone, feeling the hairs on his nape standing up as cold fear poisoned his blood and the rumors of the murderer prince echoed in his eerily  quiet mind. With one last tug, the man finally let go of him.

 

"W-would you.....would you like to order right now?" He heard his own unsteady voice sputter out the words, hoping to distract Yoongi from a talk. "Actually, yes." Jungkook interrupted. Hoseok had momentarily forgotten about him. He gave the redhead a smile "We prefer to order right now. I think my hyung is rather hungry, right?" Yoongi glanced at him in confusion, nodding uncertainty when Jungkook sent him a fake, sharp grin.

 

Hoseok really wanted to hit them and run away. But of course he could do neither. Instead he bowed down with a quiet 'Of course,sir.' making his red bangs fall in his eyes, and took out his small notepad and pencil before staring at the two men expectedly.

 

Jungkook cleared his throat awkwardly and sat on the comfortable couch with a reluctant Yoongi, who kept sending him death glares. The pale man grabbed a the menu, disinterest clear in his distinctive features. His eyes glossed over the words that made zero sense to him at the moment, as they seemed to prefer glancing at his fidgeting soulmate a lot more. Hoseok's eyes met his when he glanced  up and Yoongi quickly looked back at the menu, flustered. The redhead briefly wondered about the other's currently dark hair, ignoring the soft force pulling at his heart strings caused bysilver irises.

 

"I want jasmine tea." Yoongi blurted out the first familiar thing he saw on the elegant wooden menu. Hoseok's pencil moved across the paper, writing down the order dutifully. 'Wasn't he hungry?' He didn't have much time to ponder the question as the brown haired male proceeded to order half of the food on the menu. Hoseok barely managed to refrain from gaping at the man. 'Can he really eat all of this?' He figured the prince's guard is as weird as the man himself. He pocketed his notepad after writing down everything, rubbing his sweaty palms on his silk robes discreetly.

 

Yoongi watched his soulmate, as if caught in a trance. His supposed trance, however, was broken when the beautiful man turned to walk out the door. "Wait" Hoseok didn't hear him and on a panicked impulse,Yoongi stood up and crossed the small distance before grabbing the Hoseok's shoulder and turning him around, hold unintentionaly harsh. The redhead yelped in what sounded suspiciously like pain, widened eyes snapped up, reflecting a sickening fear that made Yoongi's stomach twist painfully.

 

Hoseok cursed the day his faulty stars made him the man's soulmate as the prince's strong hands grabbed his shoulders. It wasn't fair. The universe  just decided to make him the soulmate of the crown prince, regardless of the consequences he'd have to face. He'd hoped the man would see that, understand that it wasn't Hoseok's fault. That it was fate that fucked up. Quite majorly. But now he had to pay for the miscalculation of cosmetic forces, or was it just a sick game they were playing? Just to laugh at his misery some more?

 

There was no way to know.

 

He struggled to pull back, fists curling with the force. The man didn't let go, long fingers held him firmly, as if trying to prevent him from running away. Actually, he was definitely trying to stop him from escaping.  The thoughts of the impending talk didn't reassure his wandering mind the slightest bit, as it conjured all the things the maids back in Yun's mansion whispered about the crown prince.

 

He'll kill you.

 

A small traitorous voice at the back of his mind whispered cruelly.

 

Hoseok shut his eyes tightly.

 

No.

 

He will make you pay, like everyone else did.

 

It's not my fault.

 

He shook his head, breath turning quick and shallow.

 

Even she couldn't tolerate you.

 

Tears tugged at the corners of his eyes stubbornly.

 

It's not true.

 

He couldn't die,couldn't break yet another promise. Lost in the whirlwind of emotions, Hoseok didn't notice the brown haired man whispering to the prince until his wrist was released abruptly. He didn't notice the suspicious glance thrown to the door as a worried voice broke through the dark cloud of his mind like lightning.

 

"Hey, Are you alright?"

 

The words pulled him out of the hellish trance he'd been unintentionally thrown into. Dark eyes looked up to a concerned face, a questioning frown was maring the other man's otherwise handsome features. He gathered all his willpower to utter the next words, hoping -probably in vain- to be allowed to leave "Do..Do you n-need anything e-else, your h-highness?"

 

Yoongi didn't acknowledge the question. He was too stunned to. The tremor in Hoseok's timid voice and the horror in the glassy black orbs pushed him into silence. Shock overtook him as he realized the other was looking at him with fear .

 

It was disturbing.

 

"Please, call the manger." Once again, Jungkook's voice penetrated the tension no one was willing to break "and tell him the prince is here for a meeting."  Hoseok managed a shaky bow before taking a step back cautiously, frantic eyes observing the prince for another unexpected action carefully. The man kept his head down, black locks obstructing his expression.

_____________________________________

 

Hoseok let out a relieved sigh as soon as he stepped in the long corridor, using the wall to support himself while he concentrated on his breathing, willing the black dots to stop clouding his vision.

 

He descended the stairs slowly and walked towards the counter. He tore out the piece of paper and handed the long order to Hana, the older sister of his other roommate, who looked at him with unconcealed concern.

 

"Hoseok-ah, Are you ok? You look a bit pale." The familiar gentle voice eased his nerves a bit. He sent the girl a smile he hoped looked reassuring enough, answering "I'm alright now noona,Sorry."  Hana looked at him skeptically, eyes travelling over his body as if wanting to make sure he was fine "Are you sure? Are your injuries still bothering you?" Hoseok shook his head.

 

The bruised shoulder the prince had unknowingly grabbed did throb a bit, but he was too busy trying to convince his crazy heart to stop trying to set a new worldwide record to actually register the pain. He sighed internally, and cursed his weak body for healing so slowly. Though he knew the blame was mostly his for not being able to sustain it properly.

 

Still, he didn't like the worry on his friend's face so he subtly changed the subject. "Noona, do you know where Mr.Lee is? A customer is asking, actually demanding to see him." Hana nodded towards the backdoor "He's in his office." Hoseok nodded back in thanks before walking towards the closed door and knocking. He turned the metal knob after hearing a muffled 'come in' and entered the room, closing the door behind him soundlessly. 

 

The old man smiled at him gently, silent question twirling in his eyes. "Sir...um.." Hoseok shifted his weight from one foot to another, not sure of the best way to give the older the news." Actually the prince is here to see you." Might as well get over it fast then. The slave watched as the man's eyes widened a bit before standing up. The chair made a screeching sound when it was pushed backwards.

 

"He's in-"

 

"Room 10, of course" Hoseok answered before the old man could complete his question. Mr.Lee gave him a nod, accompanied by a grateful smile before leaving the room in a hurry.

 

Hoseok collapsed on a chair, the situation finally hitting him like a brick wall.

 

His soulmate was here.

 

In a luxurious room, a short distance away, talking to his manager.

 

His soulmate was here.

 

The man whose eyes turned crimson red for him was here.

 

The crown prince who was called ruthless, who was said to kill off anyone standing in his way without any hesitation was here.

 

And Hoseok was his soulmate.

 

And Hoseok was someone the universe had put in his way like a thorn. Was he going to remove him too? Or could he ignore the ugly thorn and go on with his life?

 

The gentle look he had made Hoseok hope for the latter possibility. Even if he had had his hopes crushed countless times before, even if the prince wanted to kill him, he could still hope to survive. That's all he could do, hope. Hope to be forgotten by his soulmate. 

 

Still a low voice whispered to him viciously, telling him he wouldn't be truly satisfied with that. With being ignored. He couldn't understand.

 

He feared the prince.

 

He feared the prince and yet, an unexplainable force pushed him towards the man. And Hoseok knew it was wrong. He wasn't supposed to want the prince, wasn't supposed to want to be with him, to talk to him, spend time with him.  Because they were just people the fates had branded as soulmates. The great love people sang about couldn't form between them, not when Hoseok was the man he was, even less than a commoner.

 

A slave.

 

No right existed for him. His life, his mind and body belonged to another. Every breath he took depended on someone else's whims. And he couldn't give away something that wasn't his. Even if his blue haired counterpart wasn't what he was.

 

The prince.

 

Hoseok swallowed down a sob and wiped his watering eyes stubbornly. A bitter laugh left his mouth. This was even more ridiculous than the stupid fairytales he used to read for Hee young at night, back then when they were just innocent kids and the worst things that could hurt them were the scary monsters hiding under their shared bed.

 

It didn't take long for him to find out the real, most horrorful monsters were humans themselves.

 

A knock broke the silence, followed by Jihoon's worried voice."Hyung, are you ok?" The door opened to reveal the younger, who closed it behind him before turning back towards the redhead, saying "Hana noona said you don't look too good. Is there something wrong?"

Hoseok shook his head, feeling bad for worrying his friends."Just a bit tired, that's all." He lied. Well it wasn't a complete lie since he was feeling pretty exhausted recently. Jihoon frowned "You should rest more, hyung. You've been working too much lately." Hoseok chuckled. " It's not like I have a choice now, is it? I wish I could rest though." What he actually wished was that he could tell the younger the truth or at least, ask him to take the prince's food instead of him. But he could do neither since the former was too risky and the latter was totally against the rules. The one who welcomed a customer was the one who served them till they left. Passing off a customer to another waiter was considered extremely offensive. Maybe if the food was too much for him to carry he could ask the other for help.

 

Hoseok stood up to leave the room, the other slave trailing after him" I'm serious, hyung. You need to-"

 

A jingling sound cut him off, signaling the arrival of a new customer. "Well, duty calls. Later Ji." Hoseok winked at the younger playfully, hoping to convince him he was fine, before walking towards the door and giving the newcomer a well practiced bow. "Welcome to the sunrise restaurant."

 

"Oh Hoseok! Hello!"

 

Hoseok looked up. A tall bearded man stood there in fine robes, unusually lush hair graying at the temples showcased his age." Mr.Seo!" An excited smile spread on Hoseok's face at the sight of the middle aged man. Seo Yujin returned the smile, shallow wrinkles forming around his mouth. Hoseok led the friendly man to his favorite sit, pulling out the chair for him. Seo thanked him with another smile, asking about his day. Hoseok held in a grimace, trying not to think about a pale man sitting on the second floor, last room on the right.

 

"It's been fine."

 

He forced out the words while writing down the man's chosen food. "And the usual drink?" Seo laughed at the young man's teasing tone "You know me too well already."

"I learn fast." Hoseok answered back, remembering the first day he'd almost slipped the said drink on the man. He was lucky Seo was a rare nice noble. Seo gave him a long look, expression turning serious. "Hoseok, are you ok? Are you feeling unwell? You look a bit pale…" The man asked, worry evident in his tone.

 

The redhead's eyes widened slightly.

 

Are you ok?

 

The question was asked by more people than he felt comfortable with today. Was he being that obvious? His acting must not be as good as he'd thought then. Regardless, the same lie left his mouth naturally "I'm alright.... Just a bit worn out." The man hummed. Hoseok didn't like it. He couldn't tell whether the other had bought his lie or not. And he wasn't very eager to find out. So he gave the man another smile and bowed before walking back to the counter.

 

Apparently, the order for room 10 was already prepared.

_____________________________________

 

The silence that fell over the room after Hoseok had left lasted for a few long minutes before being broken by the sound of Jungkook's palm slamming on the wooden table, making the flower vase shake by the force.

 

"With all due respect, your highness, are you out of your fucking mind?" He forced out the words in an eerily calm voice، trying to stop the increase in volume in vain "What the hell are you doing?" Jungkook glared at the blue haired man, who glared back.

 

"ME?" Yoongi yelled "Well if you opened those plate sized eyes of yours, you would see that I was just trying to stop my fuckig soulmate from disappearing once fucking again ." Yoongi could feel his face flashing in anger. A frustrated noise left Jungkook's lips "If you opened those tiny beady eyes of yours, you would see that 

you were just frightening him." Jungkook pushed out the words through gritted teeth. 

 

"He doesn't have any reason to be frightened in the first place. I'm not a goddamn demon." Yoongi shouted back, hoping the younger wouldn't notice the well hidden pain in his angry eyes. The knight stared at him in disbelief. "He doesn't?" His voice hardened, gaze turning cold " Hyung, you're the fucking crown prince while he's a mere commoner. He probably thinks you want his head on a platter for being your soulmate. If he even knows what that means anyway." Jungkook kept his voice stern and stared at the older in the eyes "YOU are the one with dream like visions and leftover feelings from a life you barely remember." Yoongi opened his mouth to say something but Jungkook didn't let him."YOU are the one who has had four years to comprehend this situation. But him? He can only see you as a threat right now and with the way you're acting, that isn't gonna change anytime soon." 

 

Jungkook knew he was being a bit too harsh, too frank, rubbing in the truth like that. But a voice at the back of his mind whispered that he had to do this. 

 

Yoongi took a few steps back and collapsed on the couch, taking his head in his hands. Jungkook was right. Hoseok must be shocked right now, and he had every right to be. This was a very big deal even if yoongi wanted to make it as simple for them as he could. It wasn't his intention to hurt the other. The mere thought sounded way too ridiculous. But his own fear of losing the redhead had made him act impulsively. He let out a bitter chuckle " Why are you acting all mature suddenly while I'm the hyung, you muscle brained guard?" 

 

The tension in the room lessened as Jungkook's eyes softened and he let a wide grin take over his lips."I'm just that awesome. I wish those entitled assholes in court could see you right now. Their cold, precious prince acting like a dumbass is a great sight."

 

"Those old stuck up fuckers can go screw themselves with their canes." Jungkook let out a laugh, the usual mischievousness returning to his eyes."Are you gonna kiss your soulmate with that mouth?" Yoongi sputtered indignity before glaring, the eye roll he sent the younger did nothing to hide the hint of red on his cheeks from the other boy. They stayed silent for a few minutes after that, until Yoongi's low voice broke it." I know I went overboard…. I just...when he turned away I.…" He swallowed with difficulty. Eyes darkened with the black cloud of memories as he let out a pained breath " I thought....I thought I would lose him again, ...like three years ago."

 

Jungkook nodded in understanding, letting his eyes turn sympathetic while his own mind flashed with the events of three years ago." I saw what you went through, hyung. I was there. I know you're afraid too, but your soulmate doesn't know that. So you need to calm down." Yoongi nodded. He needed to talk to the redhead. Needed to make him understand. He just didn't know how.

 

A knock interrupted his thoughts." Come in." A small sense of disappointment filled him when the grayish head of his informant appeared. ' What were you expecting anyway?' He mentally scolded himself before exchanging greetings with the older man. "Your highness." The man nodded at him. Yoongi gestured for him to sit. 

 

The man cut right to the chase. "I got a report that one of our men managed to save another-" Yoongi held up a hand, cutting the manager off."I did come to talk about that originally, but now, I have something else I want to discuss." It was a rash decision, he knew that. Yoongi watched as Mr.Lee nodded, confusion clearly written on his face.

 

Yoongi trusted this man, who was like a second father to him, more than he trusted himself. But the prospect of revealing what he'd only shared with Jungkook unsettled him. So he just decided to get to the point and blurted out,

 

"It looks like my soulmate works for you." 

Chapter Text

Hoseok took the tray, hands gripping the handle to keep it from shaking. Well, it turns out he was right. The food was too much for him to carry alone. He silently thanked the dark haired man for ordering so much while Jihoon walked behind him with the other tray.

He attempted to breath, in and out, trying to walk as slowly as he could under the pretence of the wooden tray filled with food being too heavy, which wasn't that far from the truth. He felt warm, probably because of the steaming food, at least he wanted to believe it was from food. The man had really ordered a lot. He hoped, albeit probably in vain, that they'd never reach the door. 

Because the soothing calm that bloomed in his chest every time he thought about the blue-haired_currently black for unknown reasons_man, and the unexplainable longing which tangled with his heartstrings, would get replaced by cold fear when the truth of what the crown prince would do to him hit him like a brick wall. There was no reason for him to get attached to a mistake from fates

After all, he wasn't ready to die yet. Not after the promise he made her .

 

The sight of the elegantly decorated door caused him to gulp nervously. Jihoon mistook his hesitance for being unable to knock and held the tray in one hand before tapping on the wooden surface. A soft voice Hoseok recognized as the guard's beckoned them in. Jihoon opened the door before walking in, Hoseok trailing close behind him. He watched as three pairs of eyes settled on them. The two darker ones serious while the silver orbs were clouded with a conflicting whirlwind of indecipherable emotions. Nervous sweat began to form on his forehead as his recently calmed heart resumed kicking with a new force.

 

Even Jihoon, who seemed surprised at the presence of their manager in the room could feel the thick tension hovering above them. The two customers looked up. The pale man's intensely fixated gaze on Hoseok while they sat down the food didn't go unnoticed by the younger slave. The room was quiet. The green-haired slave glared at the man unconsciously, while the other merely glanced at him with cold eyes for a second before his eyes shifted back to their original target.

 

Jihoon didn't like it.

 

"Hoseok," The manger called out the older. Hoseok straightened at his tone." Meet me in my office after work, alright?" The old man softened his tone when he saw how uncomfortable the other looked. Hoseok willed his tensed body to relax and nodded politely at the man, avoiding Jihoon's questioning gaze simultaneously. It seemed like everyone wanted to talk to him lately. Though the idea of yet another talk did nothing to erase the feeling of piercing eyes on him.

 

Jihoon detailed the two unknown men with distrustful eyes, careful and cautious. He was all too familiar with noble's arrogant aura.

 

He really, really didn't like it.

 

The way the shorter man sat so calmly, pale eyes shining like a predator, body screaming a kind of authority they were drilled to obey mindlessly.

 

He didn't like it. 

 

What he didn't like even more was the way he his gaze was solely focused on his hyung. His broken, submissive, poor, poor hyung, who kept answering his concerned glances with avoidance despite his painfully blunt anxiety. He wondered why the two men were making his hyung nervous. The reason wasn't important anyway, it didn't change the fact that they were worrisome. In such a short span of time, the redhead had become like the older brother he'd lost long ago, and he would be damned if he would let another selfish noble harm him.

 

He didn't like it.

 

Jihoon shifted closer to Hoseok, giving his hand a short, reassuring squeeze before letting go quickly. This time when he looked up, the pale man was glaring at him. Tugging in a smirk, he subtly moved to stand in front of Hoseok and ignored the surprised look that crossed redhead's face, also missing the way the other man narrowed his sharp eyes at him. His voice came out sharp, words being grunted out as respectfully as he could." Is there anything else we can get you, sirs?" He tried  to hide his hostility behind the formal remark.

 

Yoongi narrowed his eyes at the waiter. The way he stood in front of Hoseok, as if Yoongi was a savage animal that could pounce at any moment didn't sit right with him. A decision, though rash, settled in his mind like an uninvited guest. He saw Jungkook open his mouth, probably to thanks and send the two away. But he interrupted before the younger could say anything.

 

" Actually," he crossed his arms "could you all leave?" The prince's unanticipated reply caught the other occupants of the room off guard."All of you except him." He gestured towards Hoseok with his head, making the demand clear.

 

The words surprised even Yoongi himself. Others watched him him with different expressions. Shock, surprise, resignation and anger shadowing their faces. The manager stayed silent. All of them did. Tension circled the room like a black snake, the younger slave opened his mouth in protest "But you can't jus-"

 

"I don't recall asking for your permission." 

 

Jihoon's mouth slapped shut at the words.Yoongi's glare was cold, his words swift and terrifyingly emotionless. Until his eyes met the redhead's. There was perhaps, a tiny bit of anger in the dark orbs, but it was easily drowned by the ocean of sad acceptance. Yoongi softened his glare and tried to get rid of the rigidity in his body. He was messing up again.

 

Just then, Jungkook patted his shoulder. An encouraging smile concurred his lips, revealing bunny teeth. A deep breath left Yoongi's mouth. He had to do it. If there was one thing he'd learned as the future king, it was that opportunities were not given to you, you had to make them. He could fix it. Even if he didn't know what the problem was, he could fix it. He had to.

 

"Leave."

 

His tone left no more room for arguments. The other two men stood up from their seats. Hoseok, who'd frozen solid for the past minutes, mouthed a quick 'It's okay.' To his worried dongsaeng. They left the room with one last, subtle warning look from Jungkook.

 

And Hoseok found himself alone with the man, heart pounding with a constant warmth in his chest, unknown and strange.

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After sending Jungkook_and hopefully Yoongi_ away,Taehyung went to bathe, thanking God that servants existed to make him one. He didn't lounge in there like his normal days. Instead, he cleaned up fast and got out as quickly as he could to spend the next half an hour swimming in his closet, looking for a nice outfit. It wasn't everyday that he'd get to have dinner with his parents and fiance. 

 

He knew it was ridiculous. Jimin would call him beautiful no matter what he was wearing. In fact Taehyung would bet his newest flower crown that his fiance would give him the same awestruck look even if he were to wear rugs. 

 

Still, he wanted Jimin's burning gaze stuck on him and no one else. 40 minutes later, he came out in blue robes with gold design, which complimented his equally sky colored hair and tanned skin splendidly. He glared at the the silver crown before picking it up with distaste, glancing at the flower crown _which he just realized was actually beginning to whither. He needed to get Chan to make him a new one_ in longing while situating the metallic object on his head, fussing over his hair and tilting his head from side to side critically. 

 

The last thing he retrieved was a small wooden  box from under his bed. He had to hide it before going to sleep after Yoongi had tried to throw it away multiple times this past week. The exquisite, luminous earring. A gift from their last secret tryst, almost a month ago. 

 

A warm blush bloomed on Taehyung's cheeks after remembering what had transpired back then. He could still remember the feeling of Jimin's hands and lips everywhere on his body, warm fingers digging into his hips, plush lips sucking dark bruises on his skin before kissing them better. The way his silver hair became messed up, damp with sweat and dark pupils dilated to drown him in the black ocean of their lust. How Jimin's dark orbs would flash red at irregular intervals. How Taehyung ached in all the right places afterwards. 

 

Taehyung shook his head to get rid of the thoughts when he felt familiar warmth beginning to take over his body. There wasn't any time for that. 'Head out of gutter,Min Taehyung.' He slipped on the jewelry and stuck out his tongue at the reflection childishly after being done. Jimin was gonna lose his shit. He left the room after that. The better part of the morning_what was left of it anyway_ was spent on finishing the last of his piled up work and before he knew it, it was lunch time. The queen and the king were already seated at the table when he arrived, the former talking quietly. He made his way towards them and greeted them before sitting down. "Taehyung?" The prince looked at the source of the soft voice "Yes, mother?"

 

"Prince Jimin is arriving today, right? 

 

"Taehyung nodded."Yes, mother." This time, a rougher yet gentle voice filled the room. "I trust you'll treat him with utmost respect and hospitality?"

 

"Of course,father."

 

Things went quiet after that, the clattering of utensils the only source of noise in the big hall. Taehyung did a mental countdown.

 

119,120,121,122,123,124,12_

 

"But honey, are you absolutely sure you're okay with marrying him?"

 

Wow 2 minutes. His mother lasted 2 whole minutes before breaking the queen persona. It was a big accomplishment. A wide smile took over his face at the thought."Mom, I'm fine. Really. I've been telling you that for the past fifteen days. Every single time we talked." 

"But dear, I've only met him a few times in the balls,like, only 3 times!" Taehyung let out a fake, long sigh, barely holding back his laughter "That's cause you never really attend them." The woman pouted, a completely different image from the respectful queen."But I hate balls."

 

"Well, that's exactly why your blue-haired grump has an excuse to avoid them too." His mom laughed at that, voice filling the large room pleasantly. ' Mission accomplished' . Taehyung thought cheerfully." Taehyung, baby you have blue hair too." Taehyung pretended to gasp dramatically at that, eyes going crossed to try and look at his own bangs. "Oh my God! you're right!" The two royals continued grinning and joking, the queen teasing her son about looking extra pretty today _What are you talking about mom? I'm always pretty_ as a dark blush managed to sneak up on her younger son's face, while the king watched in silence, a fond look on his face, which was still handsome despite his increasing age.

 

"Taehyung, thank you."

 

Said boy blinked at his father, confused. The king continued "You know we've always wanted to strengthen our relationship with Kualryo against Fammoria. We've been working on improving our trades with them for that purpose. For years now, as you know." Taehyung had a feeling he knew what his father wanted to say now. He let the man go on anyway."But nothing is as strong as a marriage bond. When the proposal came, I really hesitated before telling you. I assumed you might accept it out of obligation." 

 

"It's not obligation father. I promise."

 

"I know now. But you've done your kingdom a great deal. And I'm proud of you for that." Taehyung smiled at his father before starting to eat, feeling happy at the praise. Yes, he wanted to help his people. That was one of the reasons he'd agreed to marry Jimin as soon as they reached 18، even if it felt too soon. But the agreement wasn't between their kingdoms, behind leather council chairs. It was a secret between the two of them.

 

He didn't want another war, didn't want his parents to be separated by war councils, didn't want his brother to have to take up a sword again and put his life on the line, only to be called a murderer and a monster by his own, unaware people who didn't know  any better. Taehyung didn't want his people to lose their loved ones to the flames of death, to see broken families crying to the sky. If he could prevent that by marrying the love of his life, then he'd gladly do it a thousand times. 

 

"Actually," his father spoke again "king Jin Young was also pretty surprised." Taehyung blinked. He knew the two kings had been friends since they were young, which is why his parents agreed to the proposal without too much fuss. "He said he wasn't expecting his son to walk right into the council meeting_ council war actually_ about his marriage and declare he wants to marry you." A small smirk played on the king's lips. 

 

Taehyung choked on his drink. "He… He did WHAT?" The queen laughed."That was my reaction" she chuckled at her son's flushed face."Now that you've found your match, we should start looking for someone for your brother too. That boy never shows interest in anyone. I'm worried about him." Taehyung, who'd just recovered from the second hand embarrassment, tried to hide his smirk by taking a bite of food, remembering how flustered his hyung had gotten when talking about a certain guy he'd knocked out, quite literally. 'Oh, he certainly is interested.'

 

"Speaking of Yoongi, where is he?" A nervous laugh left Taehyung's mouth." Actually... I asked  Jungkook" more like bribed him "to keep him out of the palace for today….." 

 

"Huh? Why?"

 

The younger fidgeted in his seat momentarily. "Because hyung will burn Jimin alive if he sees him." That managed to squeeze out another laughter from the queen,  and even the king. "Don't worry baby, we won't let him do that."

 

Taehyung pouted at them, completely aware that it was as princely as when his hyung scrunched up his nose like a grumpy cat. But he could do if his mother could, right?

 

"Promise? "

 

"Yes, Promise."

 

A wasn't until 15 minutes later that a maid broke the comfortable silence. "Your majesty, a letter has arrived for you." The letter was handed to him. He opened the red stamp and started to read the paper. His eyebrows furrowed, forming a frown and making concern grow in his witnessing family. He finally finished with a sigh before handing the letter to his son.

 

Taehyung read the piece of white, crisp paper three times before the words got registered in his brain. It wasn't because of horrible handwriting, but something much worse.

 

Jimin wasn't coming.

 

Due to some emergency in his kingdom, he wasn't coming for another week. That's all he got from the apology-filled letter.

 

Jimin wasn't coming.

 

'Park fucking Jimin, you're dead.'

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Jihoon kept shifting from one foot to another, a permanent glare painted his face. Worry for  Hoseok was eating away at him. They were in the manager's office, both him and the other boy. Jihoon checked him out subtlety. He was the same height as him, possessing lush brown hair that parted on his forehead, going a bit longer at the sides to frame his temples, with wide expressive eyes on his prominent features. Overall, he didn't look as threatening as the other guy did.

 

 But Jihoon wouldn't let down his guard.

 

"Jihoon, Jungkook, please have a sit." The manager gestured to the comfortable looking chairs. "I'll be back in a minute." Jihoon slumped on the left chair while the other boy, Jungkook , took the right side. Jihoon kept sending him death glares and as if the other had sensed it, he looked up and gave him a smile, taking him by surprise for a second before he hardened his glare, hands fisting his robes.

 

 Hoseok face kept flashing in his mind, unease written all over it. But there was something else to. Something alien that Jihoon couldn't place. There was another strange thing too. Mr.Lee never tolerated anyone harassing his workers. That's what everyone had told them the first day to ease the nervous newcomers. He'd even been witness to a man kicking out a customer who'd groped a waitress. 

 

Mr.Lee had done that yet, he didn't utter a word, anything when the pale man kicked everyone, including the manager himself, out of the room, as if he was the owner the whole goddamned capital. Either the man was too powerful, even among nobles, or Mr.Lee wasn't as good as everyone had said. 

 

None of this possibilities helped him calm down. He needed to get them out of this place as soon as possible. He was so lost in his thoughts that a hand on his knee almost made him jump. His reflexes kicked in before he could  panic and he quickly grabbed the wrist, twisting it a bit to the left. A pained sound filled the room and Jihoon noticed it was the other man's. "Sorry, tried calling you but you don't answer." The soft voice grunted out. Jihoon released him, watching as Jungkook sheepishly rubbed his slightly reddened wrist with the other hand.

 

 Jihoon almost felt bad. "Wow you're stronger than you look." Almost. .

 

"What do you want?" Jungkook looked at him. "Nothing. You just looked really sad there for a second." Sad? " Don't worry. Hyung won't hurt Hoseok-ssi"

 

Hoseok-ssi? HOSEOK-ssi?

 

Alarm bells started going off in Jihoon's head. How did they know Hoseok's name?!

 

"How do you know? " Jihoon almost growled, Jungkook blinked." How do I know what?"

 

"How do you know him?" Jungkook looked taken aback at the anger in the other boy's eyes. His muscles were tense, like his was ready to jump and force the answers out of him. Jungkook frowned. The servants in Sunrise were all respectful and kind. But this boy had been Nothing but aggressive since they'd started to talk."I can't say."

 

"What….?"

 

Jungkook repeated more firmly." I can't say, but I can guarantee he won't be harmed."

 

"I wouldn't be so sure if I were you. Your friend didn't look like the nicest person alive." Jihoon gritted out. 

 

Jungkook chuckled. "Believe me he isn't. But hyung won't hurt him. Especially not him."

 

"What do you mea_?"

 

"Sorry for taking so long." The manager closed the door with a smile."Jihoon, breaktime is up. Stop worrying about Hoseok and go back to work. He'll be fine." Jihoon opened his mouth to complain but closed it again. There was no choice but to believe in Mr.Lee's words for now. Quietly, he left the room, but not before hearing words that made his eyes widen.

 

"Jungkook, I need you to bring the book we talked about from the palace, today if possible."

 

The palace!

 

'Just who are these people?'

 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Hoseok stood in the middle of the elegantly decorated room motionlessly, trying his best to ignore the primal urge to run away. The prince, who seemed to have no problem talking a minute ago, was now oddly quiet.

 

Yoongi had wanted a chance to talk to his soulmate. He created a chance. But now that the flame haired boy was standing in front of him all the prince could do was stand there, speechless and stuck . The temptation to pinch himself was strong, just to make sure he wasn’t dreaming. Because the sight of his soulmate standing there, looking more gorgeous than he remembered in gray and white robes with doe black eyes staring at the ground, surely resembled a cruel daydream, a dirty trick of his mind. Maybe he never really survived 3 years ago.

 

The silence was rattling Hoseok's nerves. Elegant fingers kept playing with the hem of his sleeve, just to give his mind something to focus on, to keep himself from freaking out.

 

”Please sit down.”The prince said. Hoseok didn’t really want to. The restaurant was busy and he couldn’t afford to stay here doing nothing but there was no choice. The man standing in front of him was the crown prince after all. He hadn’t hurt him until now but who knew what he would do if Hoseok disobeyed him. Powerful people never answered defiance with kindness, He’d learned that lesson a long time ago.

 

Also the man had more than enough reasons to hate him. No prince wanted a commoner as their soulmate, a disgrace for loyalty. He’d surely kill him if he found out what Hoseok really was. He probably was here to do just that.

 

The thought sent a shiver down his spine. He hated how life had treated him but he didn’t want to leave it yet, not after coming this far.

 

Hoseok remembered the request -more like order- and looked around the room, where was he supposed to sit? What should a normal servant do when he’s asked to sit by a prince? Hosoek had no idea what was expected of him so he chose the safest option and quietly sat down on the ground, bowing his head. The fact that he was left alone with the prince made Hoseok even more nervous. He more or less had an idea of what the other man wanted to say but he didn’t think he was ready for it yet. 

 

“What are you doing?” The prince stared, genuinely confused. Why was the pretty waiter sitting on the cold ground….?

 

Well apparently Hoseok's safest option failed.

 

“I’m sorry.” Hosoek said, voice low and timid. He didn’t really know what he’d done wrong. Was he not supposed to sit there? Was he sitting too close? Maybe the prince meant something else. He quickly stood up, keeping his head low as he waited for orders. Yoongi frowned at the redhead’s weird behavior. ”Why aren’t you sitting on the couch?” He gestured to the clean, white and black seats in the room, eyebrow raised curiously.

 

Yoongi watched as Hoseok looked at him doubtfully before bowing once more, taking a sit on the edge of one of the couches. The prince sat in front of him before asking, voice rather casual for the unusual situation. “You work here?”

 

Hoseok stared at him in surprise. It was so different from what he’d expected that It took a few long seconds for him to realize the man had asked him a question. “Yes.I’ve been working here for almost two week now.....” He answered, eyebrows knitting in confusion. The prince frowned. 'Where had he been before that?'

 

“I’ve been looking for you.” His voice was soft, laced with a kind of pain that was mostly hidden. Hoseok could geuss very well why the prince had been searching for him.It was completely natural that he would. Hoseok'd just hoped that he wouldn't have to do this. But of course the man wanted to make sure. He inhaled slowly. It’s like he had no choice “I promise I won’t tell anyone.”Hosoek said, quick and honest.

 

”What ...? What do you mean?” Yoongi answered, unsure and a bit skeptical. He shifted a bit uncomfortably, not  having a good feeling about it. Hoseok let his eyes fall down, but he was hyper aware of the piercing look directed at him.The redhead had known it was coming since they met, but that didn’t make it any easier to bear. Taking in another shaky breath, he said, voice low, “I w-won’t tell anyone about ...what..what we are...so…so you don’t have to worry about me interfering with your life or…”His voice got caught, a heavy lump setting in his throat ”..or endangering your position…...I won’t cause any trouble. I-I'll just pretend it never happened and live my life quietly." Even if it’ll be hell. "So please, don't_don't hurt me ...”

 

A shocked frown sat on Yoongi’s face, disbelief filling it as he studied the other boy carefully, figuring he was serious. Yoongi didn’t understand. He didn’t want to pretend his soulmate didn’t exist. This was nowhere in his plans ”Look at me.” He ordered, repeating it more firmly when Hoseok kept his eyes on the ground. "I said, look at me, Hoseok." The black eyes snapped to him at the sound of his name, wide and filled with an emotion Yoongi didn’t want to see in them. He didn’t like it, how vulnerable and dejected the other looked, shoulders hunched and eyes downcast. Hoseok shouldn't ever have to be afraid or unsure with Yoongi, not when the older would do anything but hurt him. He was no saint, had his own fair share of blood on his hands. But the mere thought of hurting the beautiful boy in front of him was simply impossible.

 

"Look Hoseok" he paused to savor the way the name tasted on his lips, marveling at the way the too many vowels blended together perfectly on his lips. He started calmly, trying to ease the other “I'm not going to hurt you. You’re my soulmate.” Hoseok flinched at the word ”and I don't intend to hide you, nor do I want to act like you don’t exist. I'm just here to talk, about us.”

 

The redhead didn't know what to believe anymore. One second the prince was forcing everyone out of the room, looking cold and enraged and next he was claiming he just wanted a talk, gaze soft and gentle. He faced the handsome prince with a resigned look. There was no running for him, not now, not ever. It should have been obvious by now.

 

"Your highness, Just what do you want from me? " 

 

The room went silent. Smell of warm food danced in the air, teasing its spectators.

 

"A chance." Yoongi finally said. His tone held no hesitation.

 

"A chance?" Hoseok was confused. 

 

"I'm asking you for a chance to be with you. I… I know you don't believe me right now, but I'm serious." Hoseok looked taken back. It took every ounce of strength He had left to say the next words.

 

”Please, your highness. It's impossible ”

 

It was Yoongi’s turn to flinch as Hoseok uttered the next words ”Forget I exist.”

 

Yoongi felt like cold water was poured on his head, soaking his body and chilling his bones. He’d been trying to stay hopeful, to think positively. To believe the other had run away because he’d been overwhelmed. That he’d be as happy to see him as Yoongi was. 

 

He supposed it was karma laughing at his face.

 

After all, he hadn’t had the best reaction after finding out about his soulmate that winter either. He was stubborn, didn’t want to believe he could have feelings for someone he didn’t know. He refused to accept. Your lover from your previous lives . It sounded like bullshit. But three years ago, something happened. Something that made him realize he couldn’t live without, at the time nameless, redhead that always visited him in his dreams.

 

“I can’t.” His tone became even more determined. "Just give me the chance to prove it. As your soulmate."

 

"My soulmate?" Hoseok echoed the words. There was no understanding this man for him. 

 

Soulmates were chosen by fates. They were supposed to be perfect for each other. But Hoseok clearly wasn't even close enough to being perfect. Not for a prince. Not for the crown prince. Yoongi had no obligation or reason to comply with stellar forces. He told the prince as much, expecting him to agree. But the man looked at him, eyes widened, face caught between disappointment and sadness.

 

"It isn't fate."

 

"Huh?"

 

The man stared at him seriously, asking a bit unsurely “You-You do know what soulmates are, right?”

 

Hoseok nodded.”It-it means I'm...that we..that fate wants us, decided us for each other …?” His voice tailed off. He wasn’t sure if the prince wanted to hear that, because saying it outloud made it sound a thousand times more real, more catastrophic. But the man shook his head “No, no, no, no. Fate didn’t decide that. Even if she's real, fate can't decide that. Being soulmates means that in our past lives we were….we were lovers.” The prince said cautiously, taking in the shocked appearance of the redhead and sighed, figuring he must have been misinformed like most people,Yoongi decided to explain. ”Soulmates aren’t decided by fate. There are different worlds, I don't know how many, nobody does, but I know they're linked together by magic and if in one, two lovers have exceptional love but don’t get the chance to be together, fate brands them as soulmates, giving them a mark so they can find each other again. That's her only duty, but she can't choose who become soulmates." 

 

He paused to let the other take in the new information before continuing "The mark manifests as a change in eye color when they meet, at least in our world. Yours were blue.” Hoseok stared at him in wonder before dread filled him. It’s not what he’d heard from others ”Yo-you mean….”Yoongi smiled softly. “Yes. You’re my lover from past and,” The man’s eyes were filled with determination.”I’m not letting you go.”

 

Silence dominated the room. Hoseok shook his head in denial.

 

They were lovers.

 

That just made everything worse. It was impossible for him to be with the older. More impossible than the sea drying up. He’ll be disgusted by him if he finds out.

 

The man sitting on the couch, looking unmovable, as if he could take on anything and anyone, was his lover. From a life he didn't, couldn't , remember. They belonged to each other in a different world, as different people, with different lives. 

 

They were lovers.

 

And now, there they were, trapped in a world where they couldn't be what they were before.

 

The old scars suddenly throbbed on his back, evidence of his reality. An unwanted tear fell from his eyes.

 

"It's impossible."

 

At least now he knew the warmth in his chest wasn't an illusion from fate. It wasn't a fevered hullicuation. Another tear fell, slipping past the defenses of eyes and down his cheeks to wet his neck, before disappearing into his collar. It was a curse from the past. A beautiful curse appearing with blue locks and starry eyes.

 

What an unreachable dream.

 

The young  prince stood up, rounding the table to cross the small distance and sit next to the younger. Hoseok' breath hitched when a pale hand came to rest on his cheek, thumb caressing away a tear tenderly. Hoseok froze when he leaned in to kissed away a tear from the corner of his eyes, lips warm and soft on the salty skin. It hurt. 

 

Yoongi leaned back to give him a smile, so gentle with warm, warm eyes. It made more tears slip from his eyes. Yoongi slowly, very cautiously, wrapped his arms around the younger before pulling him into his chest, tightening his hold around the shaking form reassuringly to let the redhead know it was okay to cry."I'll make it possible. Trust me. Please,  just give one chance and I'll make things right."

 

And Hoseok cried.

 

He cried for his lost past, he cried for his dark present. He cried because he wanted to have the chance to struggle for a brighter future. He desperately wanted what the Yoongi was offering him, so he cried letting out his pent up pain in each sob.

 

Yoongi kept dropping affectionate kisses on his head, rocking him gently as if Hosoek was a distressed child. And Hoseok cried, because he knew he couldn't let go of this warm embrace.





Chapter Text

Hoseok didn't know what Yoongi meant when he asked for a chance.

 

But it certainly wasn't for the prince to disappear for a whole day before showing up the day after that with flowers in his hand.

 

Mr.Lee had been too busy those two nights to properly talk to him, some sort of emergency meeting with the town restaurant managers or something. He'd only hurriedly said that Hoseok could take a break when the prince visited and spend time with him. That it was okay to do that. 

 

It confused him to the point that all he could do was nod his head dumbly before leaving the room. The strange events of the day didn't make sense to him. First the prince and the whole new, strange things he had to say about soulmates, and then Mr.Lee. All of them had been too sudden for him to comprehend properly. He'd tossed and turned that night, unable to get his much needed sleep, whether it was from excitement or fear, he didn't know. He hadn't been able to sleep properly for years now, so one more night wouldn't make that much of a difference anyway. 

 

But being told that they were lovers from a past life, finding out that they , in fact chose each other, not fate, that no one was forcing them together, that it was more than an already made decision, it was still unbelievable for him and messed up his mind, chasing away his chance at sleeping. The prince claimed he wouldn't hurt him, and Hoseok saw no reason for him to lie. He could do that back then if he wanted to, and nobody would have been able to stop or even notice it. 

 

But he didn't. 

 

Instead, he asked Hoseok for a chance, something he still couldn't wrap his head around, but it set a weird feeling of happiness and warmth in his stomach. He might not really know the prince, but ever since their first meeting at the inn, he'd had a tremendous yet awfully bizarre urge to spend time with him, sit next to him, hold his hand, talk to him and just be with him .

 

But maybe he was wrong. Maybe it wasn't really their first tryst. Maybe the prince was right, and they'd known each other for lives. Maybe that's why the minty smell of the blue haired man, his sharp orbs, doll like lips, soft locks and warm, protective embrace was so, so painfully familiar. 

 

But... would he still be as gentle and familiar when he finda out about the real him? Or would he turn into a vengeful monster?

 

The possibility of the latter seemed so much more and Hoseok knew. He knew he had to do his best to make the prince turn away.

 

Hoseok took in a shaky breath and swallowed the heavy lump that had set in his throat at the thought, not wanting to wake up his two worn out friends, as his own tired eyes got heavier by each passing second, the exhaustion of the week finally catching up to him, and when Hoseok finally did fall asleep, images of a beautiful, flower garden visited him. 



And now, two days later, the prince was here. This time without his taller companion, standing at the door, hair once again dark black and completely in contrast with his milky skin and bright eyes, giving him an unworldly appearance. Hoseok bowed awkwardly, cheeks heating up under the intense stare. Yoongi walked in before he could greet him, marching towards the anxious waiter confidently. 

 

Hoseok took a nervous step back, eyes darting around, but Yoongi stood at a respectable distance, giving the redhead a small but warm smile "Hi," his eyes were mirthful. Hoseok stuttered out " H-hello. Um… welcome to Sunrise..." He tried to think of something to say when a shiny object caught his eye.

 

Yoongi noticed his curious gaze and smiled once more, this time a bit wider and happier "Oh, this is for you." The prince pushing a small vase filled with bright yellow daffodils in his hands, rough fingers brushing his skin delicately and making a dark blush rise up to his cheeks, before letting go with once last squeeze to his hands.

 

After that Yoongi went straight into Mr.Lee's office, leaving a shocked and secretly disappointed Hoseok behind to stare at the fresh petals. If he didn't know any better, Hoseok would say the prince looked a bit embarrassed with the way he hastily ran away. Instead, He decided to focus on the unexpected gift. The white and yellow of the daffodils blended together in perfect harmony, as if painted by mother nature herself. The smell of the beautiful flowers was intoxicating, wrapping around him like warm sunlight and clear blue skies, something he rarely got the chance to experience in the last few years. A delicate vase held the flowers, its glass didn't have a distinct color, rather the its color changed as the light hit it from different angles. It was too beautiful.

 

Hoseok stood there for a full minute, too stunned to move, eyes lost, as if his soul had traveled to another world, until he noticed some customers looking at him with some sort of knowing smiles and smirks, someone, who must have been some sort of parvenu, even whistled. The reactions puzzled him because everyone suddenly looked so interested in observing him and his new gift that it made him uncomfortable. Hoseok didn't have more time to ponder as a waiter came running to him, telling him that he got called into the office. 

 

He knocked on the door, receiving an almost enthusiastic "Come in" before turning the handle slowly. Mr.Lee's eyes widened slightly when they landed on the daffodils in Hoseok's hands, then they slid over to Yoongi slyly, holding his gaze for a few seconds before turning his attention back to the embarrassed redhead. The emotion that claimed his eyes when he looked at the prince then resembled a sort of ...pride, if Hoseok's eyes weren't playing tricks on him.

 

The slight redness that appeared on the pale cheeks was definitely a trick though.

 

" Hoseok" The manager nodded at him in greeting, he bowed in respect, not noticing Yoongi getting up from his seat in a hurry as he placed the flower vase on the table, very gently, very carefully, afraid he might crack the delicate glass if he used too much force. Mr.Lee motioned for him to sit. "I'll leave you two be for now. If you want, we can talk about this more tonight, okay?" His voice was kind and it reassured Hoseok unknowingly.

 

" Yoongi is a good man, Hoseok. You don't have to worry." His hands froze on his lap at the words. So the manager really did know about them. He didn't say anything, just watched the man stand up and leave the room with one last comforting pat on his shoulders, and only then did he realize that the prince was nowhere to be found. 

 

There wasn't any time to wonder about his disappearance though, since the man emerged from the bathroom a few seconds later, hair once again shining blue.

 

Thin, pink lips slowly stretched to a half smile, half smirk when Yoongi saw Hoseok sitting on the couch."So you aren't preferring the floor today huh?" Hoseok's eyes widened slightly, he was half ready to get up and sit on the ground when he realized that the man was teasing him.

 

So instead, he stared at the ocean colored locks of the man, it looked so silky and beautiful that he wondered why the prince kept concealing such pretty hair. Though he had to admit, dark hair looked just as good on him. But what was strange was that he hadn't been hiding it when they'd first met, so he properly wasn't all that concerned about being recognized. Or was that an exceptional day and this was how he normally went out? Hoseok had no idea. "What's wrong?" Yoongi noticed his gaze and asked."Um ..N-nothing." He cursed at himself for stuttering again.

 

"It's okay. Just tell me." Yoongi's voice was warm, like sands on the beach on a warm summer day. Hoseok stared, debating whether he should let his curiosity get the better of him. The same curiosity had gotten him into this hellhole years ag_" I was just wondering….." the situation was weird enough, so one more weird question probably wouldn't make it much worse.

 

"Hmm? About what?"

 

"Your hair… why do you hide it?" He asked, a bit unsure. Yoongi blinked a few times before looking at the dark wig in his hand contemplatively.

 

Then he threw the black object at the table with a loud bang.

 

Hoseok jumped slightly, wincing at the harsh sound before stealing a glance at Yoongi. The man was pouting, staring at the wig as if it was gonna take up a sword and start a rebellion against his precious crown. Despite his nerves, Hoseok couldn't help but stare.

 

Cute.

 

He blushed furiously and quickly shook his head, getting rid of the unwanted thoughts. He wasn't supposed to think like that. Yoongi turned towards the slave when he saw Hoseok shaking his head. The prince looked a bit embarrassed and wide eyed at his outburst, as if he had just remembered about the presence of the younger boy.

 

"Ahem… actually..." A faint blush appeared on Yoongi's pale cheeks as he cleared his throat awkwardly. "Sorry. I shouldn't have asked that. " Hoseok mumbled almost inaudibly, not wanting the other to be mad. 

 

Yoongi's eyebrows knitted together in a frown." Hey, it's okay. I'm the one who should be sorry. I just really hate that thing, that's all." He hated timidness in the younger's tone even more." I'm just wearing it cause I figured you wouldn't want the whole town to know that I'm…" he paused to take in the redhead's reaction "...your soulmate." And the 'you might get hurt if certain people found out about us.' went unsaid. He wouldn't let anyone touch Hoseok anyway, so there was no need to scare the other unnecessarily.

 

Hoseok couldn't help but flinch at the word 'soulmate'. He cleared his throat awkwardly before saying. " Um..Your highness, actually I… I don't think this will work." Yoongi's brows knitted together, confused and curious " What do you mean? " 

 

" I don't think …. This….soulmate thing between us," He gestured between them for emphasis" it's not gonna work." The older boy huffed out a breath."Why?" Hoseok blinked.

 

Yoongi inhaled sharply, a bit frustrated, he'd thought they were past this, but apparently he was wrong. "Why do you think it's not gonna work? " Hoseok sighted tiredly " Because your  highness, I'm not who you think I am. And when you find out the truth, you won't like it." Yoongi looked lost, a bit speechless as he didn't understand what the other meant " and you're not just anyone." Hoseok finished.

 

That seemed to hit a nerve. "So what?" Yoongi gritted out " I don't care who you are. So what if you're not a noble? So what if I'm not a commoner?" His voice rose unintentionally " So you just want to destroy us because of this? Because of some bullshit hierarchy?"

 

" You don't understand. It's not just about hierarchy. I don't want to destroy you ." 

 

"You won't."

 

" How do you know? " Hoseok was desperate to make the other see. He had to make him realize. "I will cause you trouble, your highness. I will hurt you. And I can't live, knowing that I'll make you miserable, so please , let this go, for your own sake." Hoseok was practically begging at this point. He wanted to make the prince go away, because he had no more resolve, no more strength, left to fight him and if Yoongi continued to insist, he would inevitably give in. 

 

Yoongi sighed and closed his eyes. He was tired, he didn't get much sleep last night and had an argument with his brother (who had been moody and sulky for unknown reasons) earlier that day. And now, this. 

 

He stood up from his seat, made his way towards the younger and sat on the couch next to him, just like he'd done two days ago. He ignored the way Hoseok tried to shift away as he cupped the redhead's cheeks with his hands firmly, staring at the dark eyes "I'll be miserable if I let this go. Why can't you see that?" His gaze flicked down to the red lips for a second before looking back up."I can stay here forever and let you try to convince me to forget this, but trust me when I say you'll just be wasting your time. You can't make me forget you." He lowered his voice, as if the moment would break if he didn't. So he whispered, tone much more serious. "But tell me one thing. Forget about who you are, forget about who I am, forget about everything thing and tell me, do you honestly want me to go?" He tried to make his voice as emotionless as he could. Because he knew that if Hoseok really, really didn't want him in his life, he would leave. At this point, he would listen to anything the younger asked of him.

 

Hoseok hung his head low. The hands on his face suddenly felt too warm. What the prince was suggesting was hard to imagine. His life wasn't as simple as that because if it was, then he knew what his answer was. The older seemed to notice his reluctance."Hoseok, don't overthink, don't think at all. Just tell me what you really feel and I promise, I'll make things right. Trust me."

 

Hoseok stayed silent for a few minutes, closing his eyes to focus on the situation. Yoongi giving his as much time to think about his decision as he wanted. Eventually Hoseok huffed out a breath, before laying his own hands on top of Yoongi's larger ones. "You really know how to convince people, don't you?" Yoongi caressed the soft cheeks with a thumbs, chuckling at the tone, knowing that he'd won. "You have no idea." His hands dropping from Hoseok's face in favor of holding his hands. The redhead looked down in embarrassment, making Yoongi's chest swell at the the endearing shyness as his soulmate mumbled "I'm not gonna take any responsibility when you regret this."

 

" I won't regret it, but Okay."

 

They stayed silent for a few moments until Yoongi noticed the shine coming from his small present. The present he'd spent a whole day in the library for. The thick book on flowers was probably the first book he'd managed to finish without falling asleep halfway through. "Do you like it?" He decided to break the calm, just wanting to hear the younger's voice "They're very lovely." Hoseok answered softly, eyes lingering on the daffodils. 

 

"Do you know what they mean? "

 

"The daffodils?" Yoongi nodded. Hoseok shook his head "No, I don't." Hoseok watched curiously as the older moved closer, releasing his hands to lay them on his shoulders and draw him closer. "Is this okay?" Hoseok didn't know what Yoongi meant but he nodded, deciding to trust him. Yoongi slowly moved closer and wrapped his arms around the younger in a hug, burying his head in the red locks. Hoseok tensed at the contact 'relax. It's just Yoongi. He won't hurt you.'

 

It took awhile but with Yoongi drawing comforting circles on his back, Hoseok's body eventually went slack and he cuddled closer, letting his head rest on strangely familiar shoulders. "The yellow daffodils, they mean a new beginning." Hoseok hummed and Yoongi took it as a sign that he was listening so he continued. "I don't know what happened in our previous lives and I'll probably never know. But I don't care about that. I can't do anything about the past so it doesn't matter. This is another life, I can paint it by my own hands and I….I just want to have a new beginning with you, if you let me." 

 

Hoseok stayed silent for a few moments before asking quietly. "Why do you care so much?"

 

Yoongi let out an exasperated sigh "Hoseok, I told you that_"

 

"No, not that. I… we just met a few weeks ago but… but you're trying so much when you don't know me. Not in this life anyway. You could have walked away back then. You should have . But you tried to chase a stranger. Why?"

 

Hoseok felt the older's body tense at his question. He didn't answer immediately but when he did, it only confused Hoseok more. "Because I couldn't…. can't lose you again."

 

The deep pain in his voice made Hoseok try to  look up but Yoongi only tightened his hold on him, almost painfully, as if Hoseok would disappear the moment he let go." What...what do you mean by again ? "

 

Hoseok felt Yoongi shake his head." I can't tell you right now. But one day, I promise one day, I'll tell you." Hoseok wanted to ask more, press and poke the man until he answered, because the sadness in his tone was too much for him to bear and he desperately wanted to make it disappear. But he couldn't. He couldn't demand that when he, himself, was carrying his own unspeakable secrets. So he held the prince tighter, whispering, "One day."

 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Yoongi nodded his head at the maid who set down their tea without looking at her, keeping his complete attention to the man sitting in front of him.

 

"Your highness."

 

He bowed slightly in his sit, Yoongi nodding his head in return.

 

The man was tall, even while sitting. Soft-looking brown hair framed a handsome face delicately, while green robes covered wide shoulders, the harmonious colors did a fabulous job at bringing out the impressive amber of his shining orbs. A rather odd pair of necklaces that he hadn't seen before was the only form of accessory on him. He was simply beautiful.

 

"Seokjin, I'm grateful that you accepted my offer."

 

"It is an honor to serve you, my prince."

 

"My brother couldn't come today as he had a meeting with certain court members, I hope it's okay with you?" Yoongi asked just out of courtesy, well aware that Seokjin wasn't allowed to protest anyway, at least, not without breaking a few decorum. He had a sneaking suspicion that the older wouldn't hesitate to break them_ actually smash them_ if he really was offended.

 

"Of course, your highness." The man replied politely. They sipped on their tea while Yoongi observed their surroundings carefully, checking to make sure no one would listen in as they discussed matters that were far from the official point of the meeting "How are the retrieving missions going?"

 

The older put down his cup, the small click sounding too loud in the quiet garden "Fine."

 

"And the accommodations?"

 

"There hasn't been any problems so far, thanks to your support." Seokjin replied calmly, the prince nodded at that. He's always liked talking with the older, he never beat around the bush and would always be on point. At least when it came to this matters. "And are you getting all the information you need? Any problems? "

 

"Our spies are very skilled, your highness. We've had minor issues here and there but nothing unsolvable yet." His tone then changed into a grimmer tone, something low-spirited "But you are aware that it's rather hard to track down the slaves, considering how careful and discreet the buyers are, not to mention the abductors. And finding the official documents is even more difficult"

 

Seokjin watched as Yoongi nodded solemnly. It was almost impossible to find the abducted people, most of them were disguised as servants in prosperous households and the others were forced into prostitution or manual labor. There was no way to know who was a slave and who wasn't. So they had to resort to different methods.

 

Spies disguised as slaves.

 

They had been doing this for years now, had tried various methods. It was the most efficient way to find those unfortunate souls and save them. The spies also had to find the official documents to be able to arrest the responsible bastards without too much fuss, in a quiet and discreet way, since they couldn't afford to let the other nobles find out about it and hide their slaves or worse, get rid of them. Everything about this was too risky, which is why only a few selected individuals knew about it. 

 

By the king's order, their ring consisted of only 10 people, along with 20 spies, since there weren't much trustworthy and skilled people out there. Seokjin and Namjoon along with the two princes and a few others were part of it. And now that the older held an official position in court, managing things would be much easier.

 

"Any news of the missing spy?"

 

Seokjin let out a long sigh " Nothing yet. It's been more than a month since his last report and we don't even know to whom he was sold after getting kidnapped ." Since they hadn't found the base of the red snakes yet, the spies had to find ways to get themselves abducted." But he's always been a careful one. I'm sure he'll contact us when he gets the chance."

 

Yoongi simply nodded, but deep down he was pretty worried. First a spy had gone missing for a few months before she showed up again, and now this one. As far as he knew she was Seokjin's close friend too. After coming back with the slave she'd managed to save, she said that her owner had become suspicious of her so she hadn't been able to send any messages. Maybe it was the same case this time too.

 

"Tell me if you need any specific help regarding him." The older man nodded gratefully. Yoongi took a bite from his cake as Seokjin shifted in his seat, causing the light to reflect from the polished surface of his necklaces. Yoongi eyed the metallic pair curiously. They were obviously made for two people, friendship necklaces perhaps. So why was he wearing both of them? And it looked like they had a third part too.

 

It seemed like Seokjin could read his mind because in the next seconds he smiled gently, melting the slight tension before saying. "One of them" he gestured to the delicate metals "belonged to my best friend. Though I usually hide them under my clothes. I guess I was just missing him a bit too much today." Though the sentence seemed rather nonchalant and said in smiley tone, Yoongi could easily detect the sorrow and melancholy, the absolute despair in it. Yoongi blurted out before he could stop himself. " Belonged?" 

 

Seokjin's expression darkened at the question "We had been friends since childhood. Me, Namjoon and him. He was the most cheerful and friendly child you could find, always smiling and trying to make everyone happy." Seokjin's bright eyes were hazy with memories, voice fond and in another world, as if he'd completely forgotten about Yoongi's presence. "He was a real scaredy cat too. We would always tell him scary stories whenever he pranked us but then he would start crying and we had to cuddle him to sleep." He let out a bitter chuckle. "But our happy illusion was shattered when he was kidnapped when he was 11. I used to think that it's my fault, you know. Cause I couldn't stop him. I couldn't stop them . I was 13 back then and I could only watch as everyone around me fell apart." He could still hear their cries when he slept, could still see Hoseok's happy smile being transformed into a look of fear and sometimes hatred and disappointment when he slept. "We...Namjoon and I, swore to find him then. That's how we met Mr.Lee and joined the ring."

 

An uncomfortable silence fell after that. Seokjin's kind dementor had changed into a miserable one, as if the old scars of guilt had been torn open once more, dark, shame filled blood flowing freely from the wounds. Yoongi regretted asking that question. It was far too personal, literally none of his business. And now the guilt was eating away at his bones too. How many people were suffering like this? Living miserably like Seokjin and Namjoon? How many more lives had been lost, because of egoistic aristocrats?

 

Feeling awkward, he decided to change the subject "So, how are the ones we've managed to save doing?" Seokjin grimaced at the question. "Physically, they're mostly fine now . They've been accommodated at the mansion you've provided, with enough food and doctors to tend to their wounds. But mentally… almost all of them are severely traumatized. They don't trust us or the servants. Some don't even let the doctors touch them ....."

 

The blue haired prince swallowed thickly, eyes clouding with cold rage, a black storm darkening the silver moon in them. He would make those bastards pay until they were begging for death.

 

"I have a lot to apologize for." The abrupt admission caught Seokjin off guard. The older male frowned at that. "None of this is your fault, your highness. You had nothing to do with it. It was_" Yoongi shook his head,cutting the other male off " They are my people, my responsibility, and yet...and yet I've failed them . I've failed you . I've failed your friend ."

 

Seokjin stared at the other in silence, shocked by the sudden confession from the supposed monstrous prince. "You know, you're a lot kinder than the rumors say." He gave the prince a sympathetic smile. "So you think it's my fault that my friend is gone?" 

 

"Don't be ridiculous. I didn't say that. But this is different, I'm the prince . It's my duty to keep my people safe. I'm responsible for them."

 

"I wish all the loyalists in the history felt half as responsible as you. So it's Taehyung's fault too? They're his responsibility too."

 

Yoongi made a frustrated noise "That's not what I meant. It's diffe_"

 

"It's not." Seokjin interrupted "It's not different. You don't have to carry all the weight, Yoongi. That burden is to be shared." the use of his first name didn't go unnoticed by the younger. They weren't talking as a prince and his subject any more, but as friends. "So you better stop acting like a teenage girl and get your shit together."

 

Yoongi burst out laughing at the abrupt change in manner, remembering that Seokjin wasn't really as cool and stiff polite as he pretended to be. A weird but pleasant laughter accompanied him, filling the garden with warmth(A/N: I can't really call Jin's laughter windshield wiper cause they didn't exist back then lol). Yoongi felt a lot lighter after that. He was really grateful to the older for pulling him out of his head."So now that you're done moping, let me grace you with my awesome jokes." Yoongi groaned at that. 

 

Did he say he was grateful? Well he fucking lied.

 

"No."

 

"So what do you call someone with no body and nose?"

 

"......"

 

"Nobody knows."

 

"Fuck you."

 

They spend the next hour with Seokjin laughing at his own godforsaken jokes while Yoongi cursed his damned life and wallowed in misery, praying to god to grant him an untraceable sword so he could kill the annoying noble without too much fuss.

 

But the mood was light, comfortable, and the tension of the past few days slowly slipped out of his tensed muscles. Trying to woo his soulmate was a lot more stressful than he'd thought. The boy was so lost and confused by Yoongi's behavior that he was too afraid to believe in him. Yoongi couldn't fully grasp the reason behind Hoseok's reluctance but he wasn't gonna give up. He was half afraid to go back to the restaurant the next day, afraid that Hoseok had changed his mind once again,  that Yoongi would have to convince him all over again. But he wasn't gonna throw away all his careful plans for useless anxiety.

 

Yoongi was so lost in his thoughts that he only noticed the elegant, shiny band around the brown haired man's finger when Seokjin brought up his hand to fix his hair. 

 

"Congratulations."

 

"Huh?" The man gave him a confused stare. Yoongi gestured to the golden ring on Seokjin's left hand and smiled ."Congratulations. So Namjoon finally found the balls to pop the question?"

 

Seokjin laughed at him." Yeah, he finally did. God knows I was this ready to throwing a fit."

 

"As if you don't already do that. Anyway I'm really happy for you. I'm sure you'll be even more wonderful as a married couple."

 

A soft smile then appeared on Seokjin's handsome face, eyes melting into a warm pool of distinct affection. "Thank you." He said gently before taking on his sassy tone again "You're invited, and I want you there, no excuse is acceptable."

 

Yoongi chuckled lightly, feeling happy for the older man, carefully tucking away his unreasonable jealousy in a far, dark corner of his mind "Alright, alright. Do you want me to threaten Namjoon or something? "

 

"Someone else has already done that,sorry."

 

"Damn it."

 

They smiled at each other. A few seconds passed in silence before Seokjin's gentle voice broke it "Do you...perhaps have anyone…?" He made a vague gesture with his hand.

 

For some reason Hoseok's face the day he'd found him again in the fancy restaurant flashed in his mind. Yoongi still wondered how someone could still look so beautiful, so ethereal, while crying. The way his cheeks were flushed red, tears clinging to black eyelashes desperately as the salty water made his dark, innocent eyes shine brighter, before sliding down to the trembling lips and disappearing down the tight collared his robes, was forever carved in his mind. He counted every single kiss that he was allowed to lay on the smooth skin of the redhead and wished he could kiss the pink, soft, soft lips instead….

 

Yoongi closed his eyes and shook his head furiously to prevent any more unwanted thoughts from invading his mind, cheeks turning with embarrassment. 

 

"No, not yet."

 

He answered the question. Seokjin gave him a knowing smile. "I'm sure someday, you'll find someone you want to be with, don't worry." Yoongi nodded at him in return, hiding a smile by sipping his tea.

 

I've already found him.

Chapter Text

The next day brought in blue irises, like wet earth after rain, small and seemingly insignificant, yet elegant in their unceasing beauty.

 

 'Faith' the prince had called them. But faith in what, Hoseok wasn't sure.

 

Yoongi apologized profusely since he could only stay for a little while, saying that he had to finish some emergency work till night and he couldn't come back even the next day because it was the official start of summer festivals. 

 

Hoseok reassured him that it was totally fine but deep down, he was a bit grateful. Because he needed space to breathe and seeing his soulmate's handsome face so soon after spending literally more than half an hour in his embrace the previous day, was in no way a relaxing situation. He needed to calm down.

 

He decided to completely ignore the pang of disappointment in his chest.

 

" It's ok, your highness. I understand that you're busy and I have to practice for our show too so ....."

 

The prince hummed in thought. He really, really wanted to ask Hoseok to please stop calling him your highness and just use his name already . But he knew that the younger still wasn't comfortable enough so he decided to ask for something else.

 

"So instead, will you let me take you out?"

 

"Huh?"

 

"The day after tomorrow, or rather the night, let's go out and enjoy the festivals."

 

Hoseok thought about it for a moment. There was a chance that someone from the mansion would see him. And if they told his master, he'd be doomed. "I can't. I have to perform, you know."

 

"Then after your performance."

 

"Umm….. I'm not sure the manager would approve." He was almost certain that Mr.Lee would stop the prince. That albino man, Choi must have warned him about not letting them out of his sight or something, without actually revealing their identity.

 

"So…" The prince still didn't give up."If Mr.Lee says okay, you'll come?"

 

Hoseok nodded before he could stop himself, only realizing what he'd done when Yoongi gave him a small smile. "All right. What time does your performance start?" Well he could still hope for the manager to make up some excuses for the prince, couldn't he?

 

Hoseok blinked. "Start? Don't you mean when it ends?" Yoongi shook his head."No. I want to know when it'll start. I wanna come and watch you." Hoseok's eyes widened in horror at that and he shook his head furiously "No. You can't. You absolutely , really can't come. Please don't." 

 

"Huh? But why? What's wrong with wanting to watch my soulmate dance? If anything, I'm the number one person who should be allowed to...."

 

"There's nothing wrong with that. It's just… If you come I'll….um I.."

 

Yoongi's eyebrow rose suspiciously at the redhead's strange behavior. "Is there anything about the dance that I shouldn't know about or….?" His eyebrows furrowed at the thought. As far as he knew the festival dances, although a bit complicated and hard, were either ceremonial and formal, or fun and sport-like. His suspension only rose when he noticed Hoseok flushing red to his ears. "Are you hiding something from me?" He didn't like the thought of his soulmate dancing anything less than innocent for a crowd of people. Hoseok's eyes widened in horror when he heard the incredulous tone and realized what Yoongi was implying. He shook his hands in front of his face furiously. "No, no, no. It's not like that. I just… I just don't want you to see me if I mess up the dance, so...." He quickly said the words in one breath, blushing profusely. Yoongi's eyes widened at the admission as Hoseok hid his flaming face in his hands. Yoongi couldn't help but let a fond chuckle escape at Hoseok's endearing behavior. "Don't say that Hoseok, I'm sure you'll do great."

 

"But what if I mess u-"

 

"Even if you do mess up, which I'm sure you won't, it's still okay."

 

"How can you be so sure?"

 

"I just can." Hoseok sighed tiredly at the reply. The prince was really stubborn. "The day after tomorrow, at 7." It took less than a second for Yoongi to understand the meaning of his words, and when he did, the prince felt himself smile widely "I'll be there. Don't worry,  you'll be fine" He said, failing to notice his soulmate's fixated gaze on him.

 

Hoseok couldn't help but stare at the prince in wonder. This was the first time he saw Yoongi's real smile, the prince usually gave him a tight lipped, yet friendly smile. But this one was different, with all white, straight teeth and an impossible amount of gum, the royal heir was full on grinning . Hoseok couldn't help it. The prince looked so unthinkably cute like that, that Hoseok promised himself he would try his best to bring on that smile on his handsome face as much as he could.

 

That's when his brain caught up with his thoughts, making him freeze on spot.

 

'Stop it.' He reprimanded himself mentally. He should stop thinking like that. He should stop thinking about a future where they're still together, or he would end up giving himself even more heartache when that inevitable, real  future comes."oi, earth to Hoseok." 

 

The prince's voice broke Hoseok out of his reverie, making him frown slightly. Was this really how royalties talked? "Yes?"

 

"What are you thinking about? I told you to stop worrying about your performance. It's gonna be fine." Hoseok nodded, feeling warmth bloom at the other's somewhat unorthodox faith in him.

 

"Hyung?"

 

They turned to look at the source of the voice, finding Jungkook leaning against the doorframe with crossed arms. Yoongi cocked an eyebrow. "What is it?"

 

Hoseok watched the strange man curiously as he talked with the prince." I'm sorry for interrupting you, but we should get going if we don't wanna be late for the council meeting."

 

Yoongi paused for a few moments before nodding his head." Alright, give me a minute." Jungkook gave a slight nod before disappearing quietly. Yoongi turned towards the redhead, who gave him a smile. "Seems like you're leaving." Yoongi stared at his soulmate's inky eyes without saying anything for a few moments, making Hoseok fidget under the intense gaze, before letting out a defeated sigh. "Yeah, seems like I am." His voice gave away the fact that he wasn't the least bit happy about it and it warmed Hoseok's heart. " I'll be back in two days, ok?" 

 

Hoseok nodded and waited for the man to leave." Don't worry about your performance, ok?"

 

"Okay."

 

"Also make sure to sleep well."

 

"Okay."

 

"And eat well."

 

"Okay."

 

"And..and.."

 

"Your highness?" Hoseok sighed, closing his eyes momentarily. 

 

"Yes?" Yoongi's eager tone made him smile involuntarily. "Please get going. You'll be late." Yoongi frowned at the gentle scolding, nodding his head silently. Was it that bad that he wanted to stay with his soulmate just a little bit more, rather than spending his time with stupid, old geezers? It seemed like it was.

 

He crossed the small distance between them in quick steps, brushing the red bangs out of Hoseok's face and leaned in to give the younger a sweet kiss on his exposed forehead before he could protest. 

 

He hurried to leave the room after that without another look, knowing that he wouldn't be able to go if he took another glance at Hoseok's most likely now red face.

 

_____________________________________

 

Hoseok's hand was still on his flaming forehead when there was a knock, followed by the subtle sound of the door handle being turned. Hoseok looked up to see the young guard standing in the doorway, left hand scratching the back of his head sheepishly. "Hi..um.. sorry for disturbing you again. Hyung is talking to Mr. Lee right now so I thought maybe we could talk for a few minutes?" Jungkook asked, voice giving away his uncertainty. 

 

Hoseok watched the obviously younger boy apprehensively, remembering his animosity filled eyes when they'd met a few days ago as the prince set foot in sunrise and inevitably, his life. But there was no trace of the threatening gleam in the wide eyes anymore, instead they seemed to be full of genuine curiosity. Hoseok nodded his head hesitantly, remembering the man's question. 

 

Jungkook came into the room, closing the door behind him before taking a seat on a comfortable couch. Hoseok froze at the sound  of the door clicking shut. Being alone with the prince was one thing, but being behind a closed door with this boy was another. He hated being alone with a stranger, and for some reason his soulmate was an unusual exception. "Well…" Hoseok sat in front of the young guard cautiously, raising an inquiring eyebrow. Jungkook noticed the other's stiff posture and started talking. 

 

"It's nice to meet you, Hoseok-ssi. I'm Jungkook." When Hoseok nodded in acknowledgment, Jungkook continued "I won't take long. I just came here to say sorry for acting like that a few days ago." His cheeks flushed at the memory, shame filling his bones. He'd nagged at his hyung for being harsh and unreasonable with his soulmate but he, himself hadn't been so nice either. He felt really guilty about the fearful look in the redhead's eyes, the older boy looked so kind and harmless that Jungkook felt like a heartless criminal for scaring him like that. "I didn't mean to be such an asshole but I was kinda afraid that either yours or hyung's eyes would change and someone would find out and I guess I freaked out a bit and...you know… I'm really sorry."

 

Hoseok blinked at the younger boy, amazed and a bit embarrassed. He didn't expect the intimidating guard to be such a sweet person and he almost felt bad about judging him before. Actually, he really did feel bad about it. But wait, what did he just say?

 

"Our eye color can change again?" He asked, genuinely interested. Jungkook nodded his head."Yes, it's different for each couple, actually each person, so I don't know about you guys but in some cases the eye color will change if a party experiences extreme emotions while in some it happens completely randomly and for some it won't happen again at all." Hoseok drank in the words like it was water and he had been wandering a desert for years. He was very embarrassed by his lack of knowledge in such trivial things." Oh, I got it now. Thanks." 

 

"So we're fine?"

 

Hoseok nodded. "Of course. I understand that you just wanted to protect his highness and were worried about his safety, it's okay."

 

Jungkook snorted at that, surprising Hoseok. "Actually it was more your safety that I was worried about. Yoongi hyung can protect himself and believe me when I say he would've paraded around the town calling you his soulmate if he could. I just don't think it's wise to declare it when you two are still working on your… relationship." His voice started to trail off at the end, unsure. He watched as Hoseok's eyebrows rose in surprise. 

 

Hoseok didn't know what to say. He hadn't expected the younger boy's answer. It was so weird to him, unusual and unexpected, that Jungkook came here to apologize and say he was concerned about his safety despite not knowing anything about him. He searched for something to say, someway to thanks Jungkook, but the knight interrupted him before he could. "Wait… you still call Yoongi hyung 'your highness'?!" The boy looked so incredulous and wide eyed that Hoseok would have burst out laughing if it weren't for the actual question itself. Instead he nodded his head meekly. Jungkook shook his head in amazement. "Wow I almost can't believe he hasn't been pestering you to call him by his name already. Guess he deserves an award for that." Hoseok gave an awkward smile at that, unsure how to react properly. The prince hadn't asked him that and he didn't think he could do it even if the older did ask him. It was far to informal for his 'always be respectful' brain. 

 

"Actually I brought you a book." Jungkook's voice didn't sound surprised like before, instead it almost sounded kind ."A book?" Hoseok echoed the words. 

 

"Yup a book. Mr. Lee asked me to get it. It's about soulmates, and I think it can help answer any questions you might have. It's a pretty useful one. You can give it back when you're done" Hoseok didn't know what to say. The idea of knowing more was pleasant but truthfully, almost all of this sounded a bit fishy to him, he wasn't used to receiving so much kindness from others for nothing. There must be a catch somewhere, a trap. He carefully worded his next question. "And what do you want in return? I don't think I'm capable of paying for such an valuable book." Jungkook's already big eyes widened at the question, he shook his head frantically, "Nothing really! It was Mr.Lee's idea and I thought it could help you. I don't really want anything in return."

 

Hoseok eyes him skeptically "Are you sure?" Jungkook nodded furiously "Of course hyung. I just want to help you and Yoongi hyung." Hoseok's eyes widened at the other's words, starting at him with gaping mouth when he realized how the younger har addressed him. Jungkook's own eyes mirrored his shock." I'm sorry. I didn't mean to offend you. I don't know what I was thinking Hoseok-ssi. I'm sorry." Hoseok brought up his hands to stop the other's stream of apologies " hey it's alright. I'm not offended at all. " he paused to think for a second "and it's okay if you wanna call me hyung. I don't really mind."

 

"Are you sure?" Hoseok smiled at his enthusiastic tone. The boy was really a child inside rather than the scary guard vibes he gave off."Yeah. I'm totally sure."

 

Jungkook gave him a big smile, making his face look young and innocent."Thank you, hyung!" Hoseok chuckled at the happy way he called him hyung, returning his smile. Jungkook really didn't look like the threatening man from a few days ago anymore. "Hyung?"

 

"Hmm?"

 

"I know I probably shouldn't say this but, Yoongi hyung really, really cares about you.  A lot more than he shows. So please, give him a chance."

 

Hoseok didn't say anything for a whole minute. The room went silent, the sound of the ticking clock and their soft breathing the only source of noise in the air. Just how should he reply to that?

 

The sound of the door opening draw their attention and a second later Jihoon's eyes met on Hoseok "Hey hyung, Mr.Lee told me you have a guest and_" that's when his eyes landed on Jungkook "What the hell are you doing here? " his tone changed so suddenly that it threw Hoseok off guard for a second. He gasped at the younger's disrespectful, somewhat angry tone."Jihoon…" 

 

"Is there something you need?" Jungkook asked the younger slave, eyes looking strangely amused at the sight of the angry  green-haired waiter. Jihoon seemed to finally get his shit together and answered in a calmer, yet somewhat cold voice "Mr. Lee told me to tell Hoseok's guest that his friend is waiting for him." 'So get lost already.' was completely readable in his eyes.

 

Jungkook nodded in acknowledgement before standing up, cleaning imagery dust from his dark robes and purposefully ignoring Jihoon's blant glaring from the other side of the room. " Well then, I better get going, hyung isn't the most patient person in the kingdom." Hoseok nodded at him, giving a small smile. 

 

Jungkook left the room with a goodbye, but his words stayed with Hoseok for the rest of the day. 

 

'Please, give him a chance.'

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

There were a lot of times, when Taehyung felt like he didn't belong in this world. He felt dissociated from it. The way people talked, acted, breathed , all of it was sometimes,  completely unbearable for him, too suffocating. He often found himself wanting to throw things at them, yelling at them to stop being so weird , but all he could do was hide this version of himself behind wide smiles and loud laughter. Because he was the weird one for having strange dreams and flashbacks of things that he was sure hadn't happened. 

 

Nothing made sense in this world.

 

But then Jimin fell in his life like an unstoppable hurricane, a raging storm with dark secrets and cloudy moods and, raining until the ground was filled with mud, then came the sun.

 

And Taehyung's always loved playing under the sun after rain, loved getting wet under unstoppable rain, loved the sound of thunderstorms with dark clouds covering the flashes in sky.

 

It was inevitable that he fell for the silver haired prince, really.

 

And suddenly the world made sense. 

 

People weren't strange anymore. There was no painful feeling of being suffocated by crowds. Things were fine and beautiful, promised happily ever after, till dark secrets were spilled and unpredicted people showed up.

 

Taehyung felt it as soon as the door closed behind him. The unusual warmth in the room, the tantalizing scent, the dark, silent presence that made the hairs on his nape stand up in alarm, making his breath get caught in his throat as a cold shiver traveled his spine. He opened his mouth but his voice was cut off fast.

 

"Youhmppph" A warm hand gripped his mouth, larger and much warmer than the ones he was accustomed to, another one sneaked around his waist, pulling him back against a strong chest and locking him there.

 

"Missed me, doll?"

 

A shudder overtook his body at the whispered tone as the man, taller and broader than him, leant down to bury his head in his long neck, kissing and nipping at the skin gently, hot breath wetting his skin, while his other hand caressed Taehyung's side. Warm. Too warm. 

 

'Wait.'

 

Taehyung struggled against the unfamiliar hold as a sense of panic settled over his brain, the arm on his side stopped stroking his hip and tightened around his waist once more, pulling on harshly to press their bodies even closer, the lips on his skin turned rougher. He swore he could feel every single muscle, every inch, every heartbeat of the taller man as his body became paralyzed with fear.

 

'Jimin.'

 

Involuntary tears accumulated in his blue eyes, as the hand started roaming his body, before the water slid down his cheeks. This wasn't supposed to happen. He should've listened to Yoongi hyung all those times when he told him to learn how to fight.

 

As soon as the warm, salty liquid touched the hand on his mouth, the man behind him froze, lips halting their adventurous trip abruptly and both hands stiffening for a few seconds before dropping down simultaneously. The voice that filled the room was strangled and raw, hurting Taehyung's weakened nerves.

 

"Baby?" Taehyung let a whimper escape his now uncovered mouth at the soft, worried tone.

 

"C-Ch_" his voice was broken by a sob, body shaking in fear. The hands quickly grabbed his arms and turned him around carefully, gentle palms coming to rest on his waist "Sshh. It's okay." Taehyung looked down, hiding his face from the prying gaze. The man leaned down to cup his cheeks gently, turning up his face to look at him, hooded eyes went wide at the sight of glassy orbs." Shit. Baby, I'm so sorry." He crashed Taehyung again his chest, a hand caressing his hair tenderly while the other one rubbed soothing circles into his hip, lips dropping occasional pecks on his forehead and hair, whispering an endless river of apologies. Taehyung let out a broken sob. "Shhhhh… I'm here. It's okay...I'm sorry." The taller man continued to comfort his lover.

 

They stayed like that for a few minutes, with comforting whispers and quiet shaky breaths, until eventually Taehyung wiggled out of the embrace. The man opened his mouth to say something, anything, but was interrupted by a series of soft punches on his chest. "You damn asshole. You scared me."

 

The man stayed still without saying anything, letting Taehyung release his anger as the younger kept hitting his fists on his chest lightly and cursing him. Eventually he got tired and leaned his head against the other's shoulder. The man took the prince's large hands into his before leading them towards the bed, settling them on the soft surface without letting go of their hands as the bed dipped under their weight. 

 

They stayed like that for a few minutes, silent, with clasped hands."I'm sorry." The man gazed at the sky colored eyes of the prince, trying to count the stars in them and failing miserably." I just missed you so much, so much. And I've been waiting for hours and…. And when you walked in I...I just lost myself for a second there, I'm sorry Tae. Really, really sorry." Taehyung squeezed his hand gently, reassuringly, admiring the contrast between them. His heartbeat was back to normal now that he knew the man wasn't a dangerous murderer.

 

" I'm sorry too." Taehyung began, not missing the way the man's bright eyes widened in protest. But Taehyung pushed a long finger against soft, once again familiar lips, preventing him from saying anything."I'm sorry for freaking out and hitting you. I was just... a bit overwhelmed when you suddenly appeared. I didn't expect you, you know. It's been a while, and..." Taehyung smiled a little "I guess I'm just not used to you yet."

 

The man nodded, sad understanding swimming in his eyes."It's okay, love. We just need more time." Time that was never enough, especially not for him.

 

Silent settled in the room after that, warm like a big, big, soft blanket on a winter day. Protective and safe. But it was summer and Taehyung didn't want any more warmth in his already hellish room. Why did he think a room with more sunlight was nice and good again? 

 

"Hey, can you calm down a bit? You're boiling the room."

 

The man let out a nervous chuckle at the gentle scold, tugging on the dark hair strands on his nape in embarrassment." Sorry, I got a bit too excited. You know how we are." 

 

Taehyung gave him a wide smile, all boxy and shiny teeth.

 

"It's okay. Just please stop before you cook me alive."

 

"Jimin will have my head if I do that." The man joked, but at the mention of his fiance's name, the smile dropped from Taehyung's face. The man noticed the change instantly." Tae, is everything alright? " The prince looked at the ground sadly." Hey…" An arm slipped around his shoulder. Warm. But not too warm." What's wrong, baby?" 

 

A troubled look clouded Taehyung's face,the other waited patiently for the prince to talk, fingers caressing his arms, until the younger finally did. "I just… Jimini was supposed to be here. He promised and he never breaks a promise but he didn't come and I was so,so worried that he was...that you guys were…" His throat closed up, preventing him from saying anything else. The taller man was quick to pull him on his lap, hands locking around him in a comforting embrace. Taehyung clung to the soft fabric of his clothes desperately, it was his turn to hide his face in the other's neck. "Everything is okay, baby. I promise. There was just a small emergency that required our presence,I swear. Jimin will be here next week, okay?"

 

Taehyung pulled back with a smile, it was dimmed and small but still brighter than before. The tension lessened into a lighter, happier mood. The man flicked the mole on Taehyung's nose, making him giggle at the ticklish feeling before Taehyung asked "But What are you doing here? You're supposed to be in Kualryo, aren't you? ''

 

"Oh, so you want Jimin here but not me?" The man said with faux accusation. Taehyung rolled his eyes at the teasing tone. " Agh shut up. You know that's not what I meant." He pouted at the end, ready to throw a tantrum like the five-year old son of the new maid.

 

"I know " The man confirmed,eyes dancing happily."I just sneaked out real quick to see you." Taehyung blinked, confused "But you'll see me next week...."

 

"I know,but.. I probably won't get to hold you like this then." He squeezed Taehyung's hips for emphasis with a smirk, making a blush rise on his smooth cheeks." Y-you can when it's just Jimin and me." The man puffed out a breath "That brat is too selfish to share his precious time with you."

 

" huh? But it's not sharing when he's your ot_"

 

"I know, but he's still a brat."

 

Taehyung chuckled at the man, too amused to tell him they're both brats, or maybe too distracted by the sight of pretty plump lips in front of him as his heartbeat sped up spontaneously. He missed them like crazy. The man noticed his gaze and smirked, making Taehyung gulp in anticipation as a rough thumb stroked his high cheekbone and a dark, ancient voice whispered, " It's been a while, doll, hasn't it? " before connecting their lips together in a long awaited kiss.