The very first time that Jungkook holds Yoongi's hand is deeply ingrained into his brain, and Yoongi's not entirely sure why.
The seven of them had travelled as a group and nearly got separated in the mass of tourists and everyday travelers heading to work or back home. Yoongi, being shorter in stature than most of their group besides Jimin, had almost immediately lost track of Seokjin and Namjoon, and pushed through the shoving mass with growing desperation.
His anxiety spiked; Yoongi didn't do crowds well, especially not when he wasn't surrounded by the people he knew, and the temptation to just scurry back onto the train was so overwhelming for a moment that Yoongi just stopped.
He was shoved, nudged, downright pushed out of the way; it made him stumble, made his already weak knees buckle, but before he could think of sinking to the ground, there was a hand.
A hand that wrapped oh so gently over Yoongi's clenched fist.
The hand, Yoongi found, was attached to a very familiar face, and Yoongi could have cried if not for the look of worry on Jungkook's face. With a tug as gentle as the hold on him, Jungkook maneuvered through the crowd until they were finally, blessedly free and tucked away into a small alcove for Yoongi to catch his breath.
Jungkook drops Yoongi's hand almost immediately, his cheeks endearingly flushed before his arms wrap around his own middle. It's something Jungkook has done since Yoongi met him, and he knows that it only happens when Jungkook is uncomfortable.
"Are you okay, Hyung?" Jungkook finally speaks, briefly meeting Yoongi's eyes before he looks back to the thankfully dwindling crowd. "I know you don't like big groups of people."
It takes Yoongi a moment to realize that Jungkook knows something about him that their other friends (Namjoon excluded) probably haven't noticed. He blinks slowly up at Jungkook who still isn't looking at him.
"How do you know that?" It's hard to keep the slight accusation out of his voice but Yoongi tries his best. Jungkook still flinches, looking guiltier by the second.
"You always stay in between two other people so that you have someone around you." Jungkook scratches at the back of his head, shrugging his shoulders like it's no big deal, like he hadn't noticed something that Yoongi had tried hard to hide.
To someone else it might not have been a big deal, but to Yoongi it means more than he can probably even try to explain. His chest feels fuzzy at the thought that someone actually took notice of something he did and got it right.
So many people assumed that Yoongi wasn't afraid of anything because of his "resting bitch face", (thanks, Seokjin) but the truth was that Yoongi was more afraid than anyone realized.
Hell, Namjoon only knows how bad his anxiety can get because he accidentally stumbled upon Yoongi mid anxiety attack, but that's about it.
Jungkook had only been included in their friend group for the last few months, and for him to notice something that hidden, that intimate and Yoongi makes him feel-
He's not sure how he feels about that.
"Thanks for finding me, Kook-ah." Yoongi sighs, pushing the heels of his hands against his eyes. He's more tired now than ever, but he still has the rest of the day to deal with. "Let's go find the rest of our friends, okay?"
Jungkook brightens a little bit, and together they walk through the subway loading area and up the steps into the sun. He stays next to Yoongi the whole time, and Yoongi's grateful for the awareness that someone's right there with him.
The second time that Jungkook holds Yoongi's hand is during the winter, not even two months after the train incident.
This is all Namjoon's fault and Yoongi can prove that, but the seven of them find themselves with ice skates on their feet regardless, with Taehyung windmilling his arms around to try to keep his balance. He lands on his butt with a hard thump that has Yoongi wincing in sympathy, but Taehyung just grits his teeth and gets back up to try again.
Jimin, Yoongi is disgusted to see, is gliding around the rink gracefully, with Jungkook on one arm and Namjoon on the other, all three looking absolutely beautiful together. Namjoon, of all people, pulls away to twirl in a tight spin before he glides away from Jimin and Jungkook and over to grab Seokjin's hand, who is standing with Yoongi, who is clinging to the rails.
Hoseok barely spares Yoongi a passing glance to go over to Taehyung and help him off the ice yet again, and Yoongi suddenly finds himself alone. It doesn't bother him, not really, though a part of him wishes he was more graceful or more well-balanced so that he wasn't the only one left behind.
Everytime Yoongi thinks he's ready to let go of the railing, someone zips by him and terrifies him into clinging to the railing all over again. Ice skating is hard, and requires a dexterity that Yoongi is starting to think that he just doesn't have. Maybe it's better that the rest of them have traveled to the other side of the rink leaving Yoongi alone to his piece of railing.
Maybe it's better that he's not there to slow them down.
Yoongi has just decided that the best course of action is to get off the ice, when there's the slippery sound of skates coming to a stop nearby him, and a mittened hand extends into his line of vision. He follows the mittens up to a face and is somehow unsurprised to find Jungkook.
The kid has mellowed out a little bit since everything happened at the train station, and he's much more free with himself then he had been. He still won't touch Yoongi without explicit permission though, whereas Jimin and Taehyung will hang on him even when he doesn't want to be touched.
Even now, Jungkook is standing there looking at him hopefully with his hand extended, and yet Yoongi knows that there's no pressure in this. If he tells Jungkook that he was done skating, that he just wants to go sit down for a little while, then Jungkook would skate off and leave him to his own devices, but Yoongi surprises himself.
"What's that for?" Yoongi asks instead of giving a direct denial, leaning back against the railing with his hands clutching to the cold metal.
"I thought maybe you'd want a hand? Ice skating isn't as easy as everybody makes it look, and I don't want you to be left out of the fun." Jungkook grins wide and still a little bit unsure, like he doesn't know if Yoongi might scold him or something. Then Jungkook gestures over to where Taehyung and Hoseok are skating together with their fingers linked, and Taehyung is managing to stay upright. "If we held hands then I could do most of the skating myself if that's okay with you."
"Yeah, okay." The words tumble out of his mouth without his permission, surprising both him and Jungkook, but Yoongi finds that he really genuinely is okay with it. If there was anyone here he would trust to teach him how to skate, it would be Jungkook.
"Okay? Okay!" Jungkook grins Yoongi's favorite grin; his nose scrunches up, his eyes crinkle, and his large front teeth peek out over his bottom lip. It's endearing is what it is, and it makes Yoongi smile every time he sees it, even now. "So I can touch you, then?"
"Yes Kook-ah, you can hold Hyungs hand." With a playful roll of his eyes, Yoongi reaches out and takes Jungkook's hand in his own, only to find that their mittens kind of get in the way. He's ready to ask Jungkook what they should do now, when Jungkook peels off his mitten and puts it in his pocket, gently plucking Yoongi's off as well. Yoongi takes the mitten when it's offered and shoves it into his own pocket, wincing when the chill of the wind hits his fingers.
The wind is quickly ignored, because Jungkook is taking Yoongi's hand in his own, gently linking their fingers together, and pulling Yoongi slowly away from the railing.
His legs are wobbly and uncertain; Yoongi keeps locking his knees even though Jungkook gently chastises him for it, and they haven't even gotten three feet away from the wall yet. Every so often there is a gentle squeeze to their linked hands from Jungkook, who offers Yoongi a small brilliant smile each time, and then-
Jungkook pulls Yoongi while skating backwards, pushing off with strong legs and sure steps, and before Yoongi knows it, they're gliding together. There's wind on his face that makes his eyes water because of how cold it is, but he uses his still gloved hand to pull his scarf up over his mouth and nose, and finds himself to be grinning.
Startling Yoongi with a laugh, Jungkook whirls around on his skates until they're skating side by side, both of their laughter carrying along the wind. It takes no time at all for them to catch up to the other's more leisurely pace, and they pass them just as easily.
He loses track of how many times they lapped the skating rink, and by the time the others start to leave the rink, Yoongi feels breathless and alive in ways he didn't even know he needed.
Jungkook slows them down in a last-lap, until Yoongi gently bumps into his back when they stop. Only then does Yoongi realize just how wobbly his legs are, and how weak he feels when Jungkook has him step onto land. His legs nearly give out, but a strong arm around his waist catches him before any damage is done and helps him over to the bench.
Breathless smiles are exchanged, and Yoongi whispers murmured thanks while he unlaces his ice skates and pretends not to see the way Jungkook preens at his words.
The third time that he and Jungkook end up holding hands is because Hoseok, of all people, had the bright idea to go to a christmas-themed escape house. Hoseok is the biggest worry wart in the group, and is absolutely terrified of any and all horror movie like tropes, so why he suggested the escape room, Yoongi doesn't know.
Perhaps Hoseok had the hope that the Christmas themes would help him keep a hold on his own fear. Too bad he was wrong.
It would be funny if it wasn't so sad to see one of his best friends freaking out over every new room that they make it into, especially since this outing was Hoseok's idea in the first place. He doesn't understand why Hoseok is freaking out so badly, not really, and then it happens.
Jungkook is over exploring in the closet for a clue when he steps on a pressure plate and the doors quickly swing shut. The last thing that Yoongi sees before the door shuts is the panicked look on Jungkook's face.
"Oh fuck , Jungkook-ah?" Taehyung rarely swears, and Yoongi's worry rises when Taehyung goes over to the closet and tries and fails to open the door.
"Hyung." Jungkook's voice sounds much younger than Yoongi's heard from him yet, and that worry grows until he finds himself next to Taehyung and trying uselessly to open the door.
Up close he can hear Jungkook's harsh panicked breaths, the way he's throwing himself at the doors and the whimpering noise he makes when nothing works. He finds himself murmuring useless reassurances that do little to nothing to help the friend trapped inside and it's then that Yoongi sees it.
At the bottom of the closet to the right of the doors is a small lever barely bigger than Yoongi's smallest finger, and he pushes it desperately, hoping it'll be just what he needed.
And it is.
The doors open, Jungkook stumbles out but he pushes away from Taehyung and the others worry, huddling himself against the flat wall on the opposite side of the room and taking deep breaths. Namjoon trips over the key to the next room quite literally, and the others busy themselves so Jungkook can pull himself together.
Yoongi walks over and squats in front of Jungkook, relieved to see that there are no tears in his eyes or on his face even if Yoongi doesn't get a reaction otherwise, so he offers Jungkook a small smile. It's clear he doesn't want to be bothered, so Yoongi hurries to join the others in the next room.
The moment, the exact moment that he steps into the room, Yoongi knows it's going to be more difficult for him than the others. There are blacklights and splashes of 3D art that seemingly pops out of the wall, and Yoongi is immediately done for. Vertigo slams into him and leaves him off kilter and slightly nauseated, with a high-pitched ringing in his ears that he can't get rid of.
Namjoon tries to steady him and ends up making it worse; Namjoon's attempt at helping is to gently shake him, but to his poor brain, it feels like it's been tossed in a blender.
Then there's a familiar weight in his hand, and without looking, Yoongi leans his forehead against Jungkook's back, which he is dismayed to find even in his addled state is just as strong as the rest of him. He trusts and allows Jungkook to lead him from the room when somebody finds the key out, and is more than thankful to realize that this was the last room.
Now Yoongi can feel the Sunshine on his face, though he doesn't trust himself enough yet to open his eyes, and continues to let Jungkook lead him around. They had taken two cars, so when most of them settle in the first car, Yoongi wishes he could say he's surprised, but he's not.
Jungkook settles him in the passenger seat of his own car, and rustles around in the glove compartment for medication that Yoongi didn't know Jungkook was aware he had.
It's a simple motion sickness medication, but it helps with most of the vertigo symptoms and ends up just leaving him exhausted, but Yoongi pops back the medication anyways, and settles back against the passenger seat to wait for it to kick in. Beside him, Jungkook doesn't speak, though he does pat Yoongi's knee comfortingly, which probably shouldn't have felt as nice as it does.
Once the medicine kicks in enough for Yoongi to be able to feel the drowsiness settle into his bones, he carefully blinks open his eyes, and finds Jungkook looking at him with barely concealed concern. He smiles and whispers a soft thanks, but he loses himself when Jungkook starts the car and pulls out after the others, and Yoongi fades to Oblivion.
He never remembers to thank Jungkook for coming to his rescue so soon after Jungkook had had his own breakdown.
The fourth time that they hold hands, Jungkook is so drunk that he keeps stumbling around surprisingly uncoordinated for him. No one had asked Yoongi to watch out for him, but he found he couldn't do anything else, so he watched and he waited.
Yoongi and Seokjin, as the oldest in the friend groups, had offered to be the designated drivers so no one else would have to, and so that nobody else could try and get a hand on their friends. For Seokjin that meant keeping his boyfriends out of trouble both on and off the dance floor, and for Yoongi it meant keeping an eye on the youngest.
Jungkook had just gotten out of a relationship with somebody, and was more than a little bit down over the whole situation. When Jimin had suggested a club night, Jungkook was the first one to agree, looking more excited than they had seen him in a while. He looked so excited that everybody had agreed and they made plans for that night almost immediately, happy chatter in the air.
Yoongi hadn't been worried when Jungkook took the first shot with Jimin and Namjoon, nor the two that followed. When he started accepting drinks that the bartender admitted were from admirers, Yoongi admitted to himself that he felt a little uncomfortable even thinking about leaving the younger man alone.
Luckily, Jungkook stopped accepting drinks after the fourth one, but even that was too much for Yoongi. However, Yoongi never thought of himself as a lucky man, but when Jungkook followed two men through a door that led outside to the alley, Yoongi had never been more glad that he offered to be sober. He followed as fast as he could, only to find himself face to face with a very drunk, very pissed off Jungkook.
The men were nowhere to be seen, but Jungkook's knuckles were red and raw, and at first when Yoongi came out from the door, Jungkook had turned with his hands up again, only for the look on his face to fade into relief.
"Hyung!" Jungkook chirped happily, shifting to lean against the wall behind him, smiling so unabashedly up at Yoongi that he almost forgot why he was here. "How are you?"
"Better than you, I bet." Yoongi sighs and tries not to let relief sink too far under his skin from seeing Jungkook unhurt. "What happened to your hand, Jungkookie?"
"I punched some dicks." Jungkook's lips curl up into an unfamiliar smile, and his hands clenched into fists at his side all over again. "Literally."
"Did they touch you?" There's a feeling settling in his chest that Yoongi registers as jealous, and immediately feels disgusted with himself for the relief he feels when Jungkook shakes his head no.
"They wanted to, but I said no. They still wanted to, but did you know that I took martial arts for the last 15 years of my life?" This time, Jungkook's smile is vicious and victorious, and Yoongi relates to it on a level he'd rather not think about at this point in time. He's relieved, but he still feels dirty, and seeing Jungkook waver where he stands just makes Yoongi more and more uncomfortable.
Scrubbing a hand across his face, Yoongi sighs and gestures back to the club. "Why don't we go in and find our friends? I'll get you a bottle of water and we can start sobering you up."
Jungkook's smile fades to a more serious look, and without asking, Jungkook takes Yoongi's hand in his own and walks startling straight through the doorway.
"Don't worry, Hyung. I'll protect you." Jungkook turns back and smiles, squeezing Yoongi's hand before pulling him through the throngs of people and back to their booth.
For the rest of the night, Yoongi finds Jungkook plastered to his side with a small smile, and he doesn't realize that their fingers have been linked together all night until Jungkook pulls away to go home with Jimin and Taehyung.
The fifth time Jungkook holds his hand, Yoongi has known his feelings about him have changed for a while.
He'd been avoiding the issue, if he's honest, burying himself into his work so deeply that when he finally took a break, Yoongi almost slept for two whole days. It took an intervention from Namjoon to get Yoongi to own up to his shitty behavior, and that's how he found himself with an invite for a movie night.
Yoongi had managed to avoid movie night for the last two months, and the guilt weighs heavy on him just as much as the nerves do. He's willing to see everyone, but he's not ready to see Jungkook at all, and it makes him feel awful.
He hasn't seen Jungkook since the drunk night out, and after Yoongi stopped answering the group chat, Jungkook stopped texting him and talked with everyone else instead and now-
Now Yoongi doesn't know where they are.
Still, he's welcomed with cheers at the door, but he knows the face he's looking for is missing; Yoongi finds Jungkook on the couch with his knees drawn up to his chest, his eyes wide and unsure in a way that Yoongi hasn't seen since the day Taehyung dragged the kid into the group.
He also knows that it's his fault, and he hates himself for it.
"Jungkook-ah," Yoongi begins to start his apology when Jungkook jumps off the couch and covers Yoongi's mouth with his hand. His eyes are wide and a little wet, but no tears fall.
"I'm sorry for how I behaved at the club; Jimin-hyung said I was hanging all over you, and I know you don't like to be touched and here I am touching you and shit. " Jungkook pulls away like he's been burned, biting into his bottom lip like it might keep him from saying something else, and Yoongi doesn't know what to say.
The others are coming though, so Yoongi just nods and sits down on the couch, patting Jungkook on the shoulder as he goes. "I forgive you."
That's not what he wants to say at all , but the relief it brings Jungkook makes it at least a little bit worth it in the end.
The group settles around the living room, the movie starts, and when they're halfway through it, Yoongi only comes to realize that he's been biting his thumb until he bled a bit when Jungkook takes his hand away from him, rubbing his thumb over the irritated skin. It soothes him more than it should, and when Yoongi lets himself relax, his head sinks down until he's braced against Jungkook's shoulder.
He doesn't mean to, but Yoongi promptly falls asleep.
Yoongi wakes slowly for the first time in ages; he stretches himself out and vibrates in place with how good it feels to be so loose limbed for once. He yawns wide and obnoxious until his jaw snaps and his eyes water.
Honestly, it takes Yoongi longer to realize he's not in his own bed than it should and that's when it hits him; he fell asleep at the movie night.
There are only three rooms he could be in, but Yoongi is pretty sure that judging by the faint smell of clean laundry, floral scents, and a very expensive cologne only one of them wears called Euphoria , he knows exactly whose room he's in.
Yoongi opens his eyes and finds himself perched at the edge of Jungkook's bed, and barely stops himself from jolting off of it entirely. He rolls over and finds Jungkook practically pressed against his wall, soft puffs of breath leaving his lips, and that's when Yoongi realizes that Jungkook is still asleep.
He could get up and pad to the living room and lay down on the floor or the couch with a blanket, he should get out of Jungkook's bed after all, but that's not what he does.
What Yoongi does is scoot a little closer to Jungkook; he stares down at Jungkook's sleeping face, at his slightly parted lips, his sleep tousled hair, the steady rise and fall of his chest. Without quite meaning to, Yoongi lifts a cautious hand and trails barely there fingertips along the skin of Jungkook's arm until his fingers are on Jungkook's hand.
It's then that it hits him: it's always Jungkook instigating the touch between the two of them, even when it's been Jungkook who's needed touch even more so than Yoongi. Jungkook always searches him out, always wriggles his way closer to Yoongi without hardly even having to try.
Later, Yoongi will wonder what gave him the bravery, what thought crossed his mind to make him do it, but he rests his palm on top of Jungkook's. At first, that's all it is, but then Yoongi slips his fingers in between Jungkook's sleep slack ones, and tightens his hold and-
He's holding Jungkook's hand while he's asleep. How much creepier could he get?
Yoongi goes to pull his hand away, loosens his fingers off Jungkook, but finds that he can't actually pull away. Jungkook's fingers are curled tight around Yoongi's, and when he risks a glance at his friend, he's mortified to find sleepy dark eyes blinking back at him.
"Are you really holding my hand or am I just dreaming again?" Jungkook mumbles sleepily, using his other hand to wipe and rub at his face. He doesn't seem to notice the alarming shade of red Yoongi is turning, or if he does, then he doesn't care.
"You dream about me holding your hand?" Yoongi blurts out, unable to help himself. He's curious and slowly growing more and more hopeful by the minute, only fueled by Jungkook's cheeks flushing a bright pink even as sleepy as he still is.
Jungkook shrugs a little, avoids Yoongi's eyes and gently squeezes their fingers together before mumbling: "I dream about a lot of things."
It's both a demand and a request, and it seems like Jungkook understands that, because he begins talking in detail about all the things he's dreamed about doing with Yoongi. It doesn't matter that Yoongi's eyes get heavy, or that Jungkook's voice begins to slur with sleep; all Yoongi registers is the warmth of Jungkook's hand and the way they seem to drift towards each other before sleep takes him all over again.
"I'd hold your hand all the time if you'd let me."
Jungkook's melancholy voice is what Yoongi wakes to the next time around, and he keeps his breathing soft and even while a thumb gently strokes across the top of Yoongi's hand. He doesn't want to interrupt, but he doesn't want to overhear anything that he shouldn't, so Yoongi opens his eyes and finds Jungkook staring down at him, looking determined and afraid.
Yoongi clears his throat and watches something shutter behind Jungkook's eyes and startles himself with his refusal to speak up on this anymore. "Go out with me this weekend." It's not what Yoongi means to say, not really, but he's glad he does when Jungkook's eyes light up all over again and his lips curl into a wide smile.
"Will you let me hold your hand whenever I want if I go?" Though his voice sounds teasing, Jungkook looks the most serious that Yoongi has seen in a while. "Is that okay with you?"
"More than okay." Yoongi squeezes their hands together gently, resting them on top of his chest and wriggling back down into the blankets. "I like it when you touch me."
Jungkook turns bright red and settles down in the bed next to Yoongi, his thumb continuing it's trail along Yoongi's hand. "I like that you trust me enough to let me touch you."
"I do trust you." To anyone else, Yoongi might have sounded slightly annoyed, but he's sure that Jungkook knows better with the way his face lights up, the way his nose crinkles happily, the way he snuggles in close.
Yoongi finds that he rather likes these little touches with Jungkook, and can't wait to see what the weekend will bring.